Paramount Pictures closed a deal to acquire Wheeler Dealers, a pitch for a drama that will be written by Michael Lerner. It’s based on the true story of a group of Miami twenty-somethings who landed a $300 million Pentagon contract to acquire massive stockpiles of old Chinese ammunition that wound up being sent to supply the Afghan army. The film will be produced by Will Smith and James Lassiter’s Overbrook Entertainment and Brett Ratner’s Rat Entertainment.
The actual Miami gunrunner, Efraim Diveroli, was sentenced to four years in prison. The episode created a scandal on Capitol Hill because the Pentagon contract was awarded to Diveroli’s company despite the face both were reportedly on the State Department’s Arms Trafficking Watchlist. Lerner’s repped by ICM, Anonymous Content and attorney Linda Lichter. Lerner last month sold the spec Game Theory to Summit Entertainment, with Temple Hill, Alex Goldstone and Adam Shulman producing.