EXCLUSIVE: Amblin Partners has preemptively acquired and put on a fast track The White Room. The pic has a script by hot genre scribe Bryce McGuire, and Rod Blackhurst will direct it. It was developed by The Picture Company and ACE Content and will be a co-production between those companies.
Evan Hayes will produce the film along with The Picture Co. partners Alex Heineman and Andrew Rona. Noah Lang will also serve as a producer. ACE’s founding partner Justin Barocas will also be executive producer.
The White Room is a female-driven thriller that takes place over the course of one night in the offseason of the remote Adirondack Mountains. The story unfolds when a mysterious young woman goes missing and it is up to a hardened local widow to find out the truth behind the disappearance, which may have been caused by something inhuman. The aspiration is Don’t Breathe meets Hereditary, with a strong role for a mature actress. The script was singled out on the 2018 BloodList, which tracks the strongest genre scripts.
Blackhurst will begin casting shortly. He directed the 2016 Tribeca Film Festival grand prize winner Here Alone, along with the Netflix documentary Amanda Knox, and received an Emmy nom in the directing category for the latter. Scribe McGuire is the filmmaker behind Atomic Monster/New Line’s Night Swim and is also writing the short film adaptation Whisper for Amblin and The Picture Company.
Holly Bario and Andrew Calof will oversee the film for Amblin.
Hayes most recently produced the award-winning docu Free Solo and recently joined the Emmy-winning ACE Content as a partner. This is ACE’s first studio deal. The upstart develops and produces premium original content for studios, distributors, media networks and brands including episodic television, feature film, print & publishing, digital & social media and experiential/live events.
The Picture Company is in post on Larry for Amblin and starts production on Studiocanal’s Gunpowder Milkshake this spring, which just landed Karen Gillan to star. Rona and Heineman also recently sold The French Quarter Will Not Be Spared to Lionsgate, which they are producing with Kenya Barris.
Blackhurst is repped by Justin Littman at Gotham Group; McGuire is repped by Gersh.