EXCLUSIVE: Star Thrower Entertainment has acquired rights to Bill Minutaglio and Steven L Davis’ book The Most Dangerous Man In America. In what I hear was a competitive situation, Tim and Trevor White’s Star Thrower bought the book, originally published in January and subtitled Timothy Leary, Richard Nixon and the Hunt for the Fugitive King of LSD, with plans to develop it into a limited series.
Based on freshly uncovered primary sources and firsthand interviews, The Most Dangerous Man In America follows Leary’s daring prison escape and run from the law in 1970. Aided by the Weather Underground, Leary’s prison break was the counterculture’s union of “dope and dynamite,” aimed at sparking a revolution and overthrowing the government. The ensuing global manhunt, led by President Nixon, spanned 28 months and wound its way among homegrown radicals, European aristocrats, a Black Panther outpost in Algeria, an international arms dealer, hash-smuggling hippies from the Brotherhood of Eternal Love and secret agents on four continents, culminating in one of the trippiest journeys through the American counterculture.
“We are thrilled to be working with Bill and Steven, whose in-depth research and compelling writing tells the story of one of the great manhunts of the 20th century, involving so many of the political and cultural icons of the time,” say the Whites. “The events and themes of this story remain incredibly relevant today and we look forward to putting together a package that will be attractive to buyers.”
Star Thrower production head Allan Mandelbaum discovered the project and brought it into the company.
Minutaglio is former Professor of Journalism at the University of Texas and spent 18 years as a senior writer and columnist at The Dallas Morning News, where he traveled with the Sandinista Army, reported on the tearing down of the Berlin Wall, and filed stories about the end of the Marcos regime in Manila. He’s written a number of critically acclaimed bestsellers including First Son: George W. Bush & The Bush Family Dynasty and City on Fire.
Davis is a PEN USA award-winning author of several books that focus on iconoclasts in America. He is a past president of the Texas Institute of Letters. His other critically acclaimed books include J. Frank Dobie: A Liberated Mind and Texas Literary Outlaws: Six Writers In The Sixties and Beyond.
Together, Minutaglio and Davis previously wrote the PEN-winning Dallas 1963.
Star Thrower’s credits include Steven Spielberg’s The Post, whose script they developed with writer Liz Hannah; Matt Spicer’s Indie Spirit Award-winning Ingrid Goes West; Taylor Sheridan’s Wind River; and Rob Reiner’s LBJ. The company is producing Mercury 13 for Amazon, where it is reteaming with The Post collaborators Amy Pascal, Bradley Whitford and Hannah; and is in post-production on Villains with Bill Skarsgård, Maika Monroe, Kyra Sedgwick and Jeffrey Donovan.
Anonymous Content repped the film and TV rights on behalf of the authors and publishing agent David Hale Smith of Inkwell Management in New York.