EXCLUSIVE: Max Hurwitz has sold his spec script Forgive Me to Amazon Studios. Michael Costigan is producing. The script was on the 2014 Black List and chronicles the story of legendary newscaster Mike Wallace. While he was building TV news empire Sixty Minutes, he also struggled with a major chemical depression that he kept secret from friends and family until the end of his career.
Films about journalists are enjoying a good moment with Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight and, to a lesser extent, James Vanderbilt’s Truth drawing critical acclaim and awards interest. Wallace is a modern American news icon, fronting 60 Minutes for some 37 years. He was known for his tough, probing style. Wallace was previously portrayed by Christopher Plummer in Michael Mann’s The Insider opposite Russell Crowe and Al Pacino.
Hurwitz’s star is on the rise. This past year he has written Phone Call From Heaven at Warner Bros for Denise DiNovi, Titan for Brian-Kavanaugh Jones which has Sam Worthington and Ruth Wilson attached that is set to start production in the new year , and has also written on AMC’s Hell on Wheels.
Hurwitz is repped by CAA, Grandview, and Jackoway.
Amazon Studios, under Ted Hope, is ramping up its film activities. Its first original film, Spike Lee’s Chi-raq, is generating plenty of ink with its look at gun crime in Chicago. The film features Nick Cannon, Wesley Snipes, Jennifer Hudson, D.B. Sweeney, Harry Lennix, Steve Harris, Angela Basset with John Cusack and Samuel L. Jackson. Teyonah Parris plays the lead role.
Amazon made its first feature acquisition earlier this year with the Kevin Spacey-Michael Shannon-starrer Elvis & Nixon, directed by Liza Johnson. Bleecker Street is handling the theatrical release on that one. Amazon also acquired Whit Stillman period comedy Love & Friendship starring Kate Beckinsale, Chloë Sevigny, Xavier Samuel, Stephen Fry and Emma Greenwell. The film reunites Beckinsale and Sevigny with Stillman for the first time since 1998 cult classic The Last Days Of Disco.