EXCLUSIVE: The Gotham Group has optioned film rights to Erin Somers’ contemporary novel, Stay Up With Hugo Best which Somers will be adapting. The book was recently published by Scribner, a division of Simon & Schuster on April 2.
Stay Up With Hugo Best follows June Bloom, a broke, cynical 29-year-old writers’ assistant on the late-night comedy show, Stay Up with Hugo Best. Hugo Best is in his 60s and is a beloved icon of TV and humor — and a notorious womanizer. After he unexpectedly retires and a party is held for his now unemployed staff, June ends up at a dive bar for an open-mic night and prepares for the sad return to the anonymous comedian lifestyle. What she’s not prepared for is a run-in with Hugo at that dive bar nor for the invitation that swiftly follows: Hugo asks June to come to his mansion in Greenwich for the long Memorial Day weekend. He insists “no funny business.”
June, in need of a job and money, confident she can handle herself, but secretly harboring the remains of a childhood crush on the charming older comedian and former role model, accepts. The exact terms of the visit are never spelled out, but June is realistic and clear-eyed enough to guess. Even so, as the weekend unfolds and the enigmatic Hugo gradually reveals himself, their dynamic proves to be much more complicated and less predictable than she expected.
Somers’s writing has appeared in The New Yorker, Tin House Open Bar, Ploughshares, American Short Fiction, McSweeney’s, the Cincinnati Review, and many other publications. She was a 2016 NYC Center for Fiction Emerging Writer Fellow and a 2016 Millay Colony resident.
ICM Partners both negotiated the deal for world English rights as well as the film deal.