EXCLUSIVE: Lionsgate is in advanced talks to acquire The Punch Escrow, a futuristic novel by Tal M. Klein that was first published by InkShares. The novel’s high concept and strong lead role drew interest from around town this week.


The protagonist is Joel Byram, who lives in what seems the best of times in 2147. There is peace on Earth, with the last war ending 50 years prior. They’ve found ways to purify the air — mosquitoes feast on carbon fumes instead of blood, ending air pollution — and they’ve cured most ailments, even aging. Travel has become a cinch because of teleportation, handled exclusively by International Transport, the world’s most powerful privately held company, headquartered in NYC. Its slogan “Departure, Arrival … Delight!” doesn’t square with the experience Byram just had when he went through the teleportation experience and finds that he has been duplicated in the process, exposing a flaw in this futuristic nirvana. Suddenly, he must outsmart the shadowy organization that controls teleportation, outrun the religious sect that’s out to destroy it and find a way back to the woman he loves in a world that now has two of him.

It’s the first novel for Klein, who’s being repped in the deal by UTA.