MAIN NEWS HEADLINES
February 21 – February 28, 2008 Edition
CBS Films Options
Feature Films Based
On Flynn’s Mitch Rapp
NEW YORK/LOS ANGELES/02/21/08–CBS Films and Simon & Schuster/Atria Books-both divisions of CBS Corporation, reached film and publishing agreements February 14 with best-selling author Vince Flynn for upcoming projects, it was jointly announced by Amy Baer, President & CEO of CBS Films, and Carolyn Reidy, President & CEO of Simon & Schuster.
Flynn is the author of nine best-selling novels, eight of which feature the popular character, counter-terrorism operative Mitch Rapp. Flynn’s books have sold more than 10 million copies in print in the U.S., and with his most recent book, Protect and Defend, he joined the ranks of those select few authors who can immediately claim the Number One spot on hardcover bestseller lists in their first week on sale.
CBS Films has optioned the rights for Flynn’s Mitch Rapp character with the intention of creating a character-based, action-thriller movie franchise. Lorenzo di Bonaventura, who produced two of last summer’s hits -"Transformers" and Stephen King’s "1408" – and Nick Wechsler ("We Own The Night") are in negotiations to produce the films.
Flynn’s new agreement with Atria and Simon & Schuster is a four-book global publishing deal for all world rights, including translation and audio. The worldwide simultaneous English language publication of the first book in the agreement by Atria and Simon & Schuster companies in the U.K., Canada and Australia will take place in 2010. Flynn will be published under the direction of Atria Executive Vice President and Publisher Judith Curr, and Vice President and Executive Editorial Director Emily Bestler, who made the acquisition.
"We have always passionately believed in Vince Flynn’s star potential as a bestselling author, and equally that his books deserved the even wider audience and exposure that can be reached through feature films," said Reidy. "That this comes about through our relationship with CBS Films is even more exciting for us, and we look forward to seeing Mitch Rapp on the screen, and many more Simon & Schuster properties developed in conjunction with CBS."
"One of my first goals for CBS Films was to find a character-based movie franchise," said Baer. "With the Mitch Rapp series, Vince Flynn has created a relatable, modern, post-9/11 hero for the action/thriller genre. It is an amazing collection of creative material that offers tremendous potential for a smart, energizing new film franchise with appeal to a wide range of movie-going audiences. The publishing world has always provided abundant source material for motion pictures, and we’re fortunate that our corporate cousins at Simon & Schuster attract and nurture some of the world’s best literary assets."
"Vince Flynn’s career has been steadily on the rise since he self-published his first book, Term Limits, and together we’ve watched his popularity grow with every successive publication," said Curr. "Now readers and moviegoers alike can savor more of the thrilling insider insight and verisimilitude that has made him a favorite of average citizens and the national security operatives who protect us."
"I couldn’t be happier with this deal," said Flynn. "Signing up for four more books, keeping the movie in the family with CBS Films and getting Lorenzo and Nick to sign on as producers … it’s the outcome I’d always hoped for. Loyalty is a big thing to me. Simon & Schuster, Atria and Pocket Books have stood by me for 10 years and done a magnificent job publishing my novels. Lorenzo and Nick have been trying to bring Mitch Rapp to the big screen since 2004, so there is a level of commitment on their part that is very comforting to me. They understand Mitch Rapp, as does Amy Baer and her team. It is going to be a lot of fun watching CBS Films hit this thing out of the park."
"Vince has created an unbelievably unique and dynamic character in Mitch Rapp," said DI Bonaventura. "Nick and I can’t wait to bring him to the screen and we feel lucky to be doing this in partnership with CBS."
Sloan Harris and Ron Bernstein of ICM represented Flynn for the publishing and film agreements.
About the Author
Before becoming a well-knwon author, Flynn had been stymied by stint in the Marine Corps, and returned to the nine to five grind and took a job with United Properties, a commercial real estate company in the Twin Cities. During his spare time he worked on the idea he had for his first book. After two years with United Properties he decided to take a big gamble. He quit his job, moved to Colorado and began working full time on what would eventually become Term Limits . Like many struggling artists before him he bartended at night and wrote during the day. Five years and sixty plus rejection letters later he took the unusual step of self-publishing his first novel. The book went to number one in the Twin Cities and within a week had a new agent and two book deal with Pocket Books, a Simon & Schuster imprint.
Term Limits hit the New York Times Best Seller List in paperback and started a trend for all of Flynn’s novels. Seven books later he has become a perennial best seller and is lauded for his research and prescient warnings about the rise of Islamic Radical Fundamentalism and terrorism. Read by current and former presidents, foreign heads of state and intelligence professionals around the world, Flynn’s novels are taken so seriously one high ranking CIA official told his people, "I want you to read Flynn’s books and start thinking about how we can more effectively wage this war on terror."
The high-level of success and attention Flynn has garnered from his novels eventually brought him to Hollywood. In 2005 he was approached by the creators of the hit FOX show "24" and asked if he would join the writing staff. With a family in Minnesota and a fresh four book deal from Simon & Schuster imprint Atria, a move to L.A. was not in the cards. A middle ground was reached and Flynn came on board as story consultant for season five. In the Fall of 2006 Flynn signed a deal with FOX to create a new series with Joel Surnow, Bob Cochran and Howard Gordon, the brain trust behind "24". Flynn finished the script this past February and is now in rewrites. His 9th novel Protect and Defend , was published on October 30th, 2007.
Flynn lives in the Twin Cities with his wife and three children.
Simon & Schuster, a part of the CBS Corporation, is a global leader in the field of general interest publishing, dedicated to providing the best in fiction and nonfiction for consumers of all ages, across all printed, electronic, and audio formats. Its divisions include Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing, Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing, Simon & Schuster Audio, Simon & Schuster Digital, and international companies in Australia, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
CBS Films, established in 2007, plans to develop and produce four to six movies a year spanning all genres, with production budgets up to $50 million per film. The films will be released domestically through a US theatrical distribution unit to be established within CBS Films.
CBS Corporation (NYSE: CBS.A and CBS) is a mass media company with constituent parts that reach back to the beginnings of the broadcast industry, as well as newer businesses that operate on the leading edge of the media industry.