EXCLUSIVE: Akiva Goldsman has signed on to write and produce the film adaptations of author Marcus Sakey’s bestselling Brilliance trilogy.
Goldsman will write the adaptations and produce the films with Shane Salerno and The Story Factory. The producers will shop the book series, which has sold two million copies worldwide.
Goldsman won his Oscar for A Beautiful Mind and his script work ranges from I Am Legend to The Da Vinci Code, and most recently the Stephen King The Shining continuation Doctor Sleep as well as producing an adaptation of Tom Clancy’s Without Remorse as a potential star vehicle for Michael B. Jordan.
The Brilliance trilogy is set in a future world where “brilliants” — the rare 1% born gifted with superior mental abilities — are carefully tracked by the government. Federal agent Nick Cooper, himself a “brilliant,’ is tasked with using his own gifts to infiltrate a radical group and hunt down another ‘brilliant’ who could plunge the entire country into a devastating civil war. But to catch him, Cooper will have to violate everything he believes in – and betray his own kind.
“It’s rare to find complex characters and deep world building in the same literary work,” Goldsman said. “Marcus Sakey’s Brilliance trilogy does just that. I’m excited to dig in with Story Factory to help generate the movies these wonderful novels deserve.”
it’s the second go-around for the Brilliance trilogy, which initially sold to Legendary in a low seven figure deal as a potential Will Smith vehicle. Rights reverted back to Sakey, and the author waited until he wrote two sequels — A Better World and Written in Fire — to flesh out a potential franchise before taking another crack at Hollywood.
“Akiva Goldsman has a remarkable history of creating worlds that are rich both in ideas and in pure entertainment,” Sakey said. “He writes deeply compelling films that leave you talking afterward. I’m thrilled he’s writing Brilliance.”
Sakey set his most recent bestseller Afterlife at Imagine Entertainment and Story Factory, and the author’s adapting it with script to be sent to directors shortly.
The Story Factory has a number of projects around town, including an adaptation of A Higher Loyalty at CBS, which Billy Ray is adapting from the book by former FBI chief James Comey; a James Mangold-directed adaptation of the Don Winslow novel The Force with script by Scott Frank and David Mamet; Winslow’s The Cartel at Twentieth Century Fox with Salerno adapting; and the most recent being a deal for the Lou Berney’s breakout novel November Road to be adapted, directed and produced by Lawrence Kasdan.
Goldsman is repped by CAA and Hansen, Jacobson; Sakey is repped by The Story Factory.
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