EXCLUSIVE: In a competitive situation, Warner Bros has acquired Principia, a pitch that will be scripted by Christian Contreras, with David Goyer producing through his Phantom Four Productions banner with Kevin Turen.

They are keeping the logline under wraps, but it’s based on actual events. A high-concept historical thriller in the vein of The Prestige, this one involves Isaac Newton and the hunt for a notorious criminal. The scribe, an American who lives in London and has acted in Fury, The Fifth Estate and Zero Dark Thirty, just came to Hollywood a couple of weeks ago with an idea he wanted to write. He signed with WME and Grandview Entertainment, and Goyer heard the pitch late last week and set it up with Warner Bros that night.

Goyer has been expanding his portfolio as producer, most recently acquiring the short film Miles for a feature adaptation. Contreras separately scripted Labyrinth, a drama about the murder cases of Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G., with producer Miriam Segal developing it.

Goyer separately has Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice coming and set the Natalie Dormer-starrer The Forest for a May production start with Lava Bear producing and Focus Features releasing. On TV, Da Vinci’s Demons is returning to Starz in the fall. Both Goyer and Contreras are repped by WME, Curtis Brown and Bloom Hergott, and Contreras is managed by Grandview. Drew Crevello and Julia Spiro will oversee Principia for Warner Bros.