EXCLUSIVE: Sony Pictures and producer Scott Rudin are near a deal to acquire Flash Boys, the hottest-selling book in the country. Michael Lewis’ nonfiction work is about a group of Wall Street guys who grew frustrated by a loophole that gave traders the opportunity to game the stock market. They banded together to reform the financial markets by creating an exchange that rendered impotent the act of high-frequency trading, a growing form of trading that gave insiders an advantage. A story that is the antithesis of the practices that created the 2008 financial crisis, the book traces how the Flash Boys walked away from huge-money jobs to use their expertise to investigate big banks, stock exchanges and high-frequency trading firms. They peeled back the layers to bare why many feel that Wall Street is such a rigged game. The Flash Boys are the kind of guys who would have hated Jordan Belfort, the anti-hero of The Wolf Of Wall Street.
Rudin will produce with Eli Bush, and the deal was engineered by production president Michael De Luca and Elizabeth Cantillon. Rudin and De Luca were producers of Moneyball, the last hit film by Sony Pictures that was adapted from a Lewis bestseller. Hollywood loves Lewis, who specializes in taking complex subjects and breaking them down in most relatable ways by telling the stories through the perspective of intriguing characters. That included The Blind Side – which, like Moneyball, was a Best Picture Oscar nominee. Lewis’s book Liar’s Poker is being developed to be directed by Glenn Requa and John Ficarra, and The Big Short is with Brad Pitt’s Plan B with Adam McKay attached to direct. CAA reps Lewis.