EXCLUSIVE: Screenwriter Brenda Herrold has landed the sought-after gig of adapting MGM’s story of Snowman, the Long Island, NY, plow horse who escaped the slaughterhouse to become a champion show jumper in the 1950s.

SnowmanEighty-Dollar Champion is based on the 2011 NY Times bestseller by Elizabeth Letts, who first heard Snowman’s incredible story after spotting an old black-and-white photo of him and his rider leaping over the back of another horse. She tracked down Harry de Leyer, the riding instructor who bought Snowman and turned him into a Hall of Fame show jumper and a nationwide equine celebrity.

John Gatins (Flight) is producing the project, which is in development at MGM under Jonathan Glickman and Tabitha Shick. Herrold previously developed the animated film Awaken for Disney while in the studio’s writers program and set up the South Central car culture drama Chrome & Paint with Disney and Ice Cube. She’s repped by Paradigm, Madhouse Entertainment, and Hansen Jacobsen. Letts is repped by APA and Folio Literary.