In a competitive situation with a number of studios and production companies pursuing, Brian Grazer and Ron Howard’s Imagine has made a two-year first-look deal with The Atavist Magazine for film and television.
Under the pact, Imagine will develop film and television projects based on upcoming Atavist articles and also will have access to the digital magazine’s extensive archive.
The Atavist Magazine, led by co-founder/editor in chief Evan Ratliff and executive editor Seyward Darby, publishes one nonfiction story a month with a focus on true stories featuring in-depth reporting by top journalists and writers. Since 2011, Atavist has been nominated for nine National Magazine Awards and two Emmys. A number of its stories already have been optioned for film and TV projects; those include the Russo Brothers pre-emptively acquiring the rights to “The Mastermind,” an investigative series of articles; Brett Ratner and James Packer optioning the Jon Mooallem article “American Hippopotamus” for a feature film with Edward Norton’s company producing; and Cinemax/HBO optioning Joshuah Bearman’s article “Baghdad Country Club” with Team Downey for a TV series.
After being affiliated with major film and TV studios for decades, Imagine Entertainment last year went independent backed by a $100 million investment from Raine Group.
The deal was negotiated on behalf of Atavist by CAA, Circle of Confusion and Jackaway Tyerman.