EXCLUSIVE: Former Army sergeant and intelligence analyst with the 82nd Airborne Division-turned-screenwriter Mitchell LaFortune’s Burn Run has just sold to Thunder Road Pictures, one of the production companies behind the gritty Sicario.
The spec went out last week from Paradigm, one of two screenplays with the same title and set in Afghanistan. This one, however, is based on true events from LaFortune’s experiences while working as an intelligence officer at the Defense Intelligence Agency who was deployed to the western region of Afghanistan during the Edward Snowden leaks in 2013. Prior to his time at DIA, LaFortune served as an intelligence analyst in the U.S. Army, developing counter-insurgency strategy for Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Burn Run was pitched as Sicario meets Jason Bourne with the storyline “when an intelligence leak dangerously exposes a covert mission in Afghanistan, a grieving CIA operative and his translator must find their way out of the desert, outgunned and hunted by elite special forces.”
Producing the film will be Thunder Road’s Basil Iwanyk and Erica Lee (who brought it into the company). Andrea Dimity will serve as an exec producer.
Other films on Thunder Road’s slate (with other producers, all) include the thriller 24 Hours to Live, which will mark the feature directing debut of Brian Smrz and will star Ethan Hawke; the drama Wind River starring Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen and written by Sicario scribe Taylor Sheridan, who also is on board to make his feature directorial debut; Hotel Mumbai, about the 2008 terrorist attacks on the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai which was recently acquired by The Weinstein Co.; and a sequel to Sicario.
LaFortune, who is repped by Paradigm, is currently working on a project that examines violence, radicalization and the impact of war on combat veterans post-9/11.