EXCLUSIVE: A 39-page haunted house short story by first-time writer Victor Sweetser has created a frenzy, with five bids in for movie rights and more coming including some of the big names in the genre game.
The Occupant went to market yesterday, and the reaction was quick. This is the story of a 100-year-old Victorian home offered up for free, with the caveat the new owner has to put it on a flatbed and move it from the lot it occupies. The story begins cleverly with texts back and forth between a husband and a wife, who cannot get over their good luck to be chosen to take the house. Naturally, we learn there is no such thing as a free house.
The narrator is a teen named Chloe, who lives in the town where the home is being moved. She and her boyfriend Mason are disappointed to see it’s going to be plopped onto The Shole, their nickname for the shithole empty lot where the neighborhood kids go to drink, smoke and lose their virginity. They decide to explore the structure before the homeowners move in.
In a yarn that is one part Poltergeist mixed in with Stephen King, they learn the house is haunted, and its supernatural occupant begins to turn itself loose on members of its new neighborhood, with horrifying results. It becomes a full-fledged scare fest.
None of those involved are commenting, but here is what I’ve heard. Verve is running point on the auction, along with Scott Glassgold who is producing. I’ve heard that Zach Cregger, Roy Lee, Lindsay Beer, Neal Moritz, Gary Dauberman, Walter Hamada and Point Grey’s Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg are also circling bids as producers. There might be as many as nine bids before this one is sorted. Stay tuned.
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