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November 1-15, 2005 Edition
Acquires Film Rights
To Mike Lupicas HeatLOS ANGELES/10/24/05Walden Media has acquired the rights to New York Times best-selling author Mike Lupicas forthcoming book Heat, which is being published by Philomel, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers Group, in spring 2006. Joseph Del Hierro, whose Oh Really Productions has a first-look production deal with Walden Media, will serve as producer. Heat is the first project that will be developed under that deal.
Heat revolves around twelve-year-old Michael Arroyo, who lives in the shadows of Yankee Stadium, home of his heroes, but a place he could never afford to see the inside of. He also lives in the shadows of his Bronx neighborhood, hiding from the officials who would separate him from his seventeen-year-old brother if they knew the two boys were living on their own. Baseball is Michael’s only salvation, along with his dream of playing in the Little League World Seriesuntil a rival accuses Michael of being older than the league limit. With no parents and a birth certificate stuck in his native Cuba, the shadows in Michael’s life grow darker.
Mike Lupica is a sports reporter for the New York Daily News, a regular on ESPNs The Sports Reporters and a frequent guest on Imus in the Morning. He has written many books for adults and his first book for children, Travel Team, hit #1 on the New York Times Bestseller list.
Lupica is represented by ICM. David Kaufmann and Jared Mass will oversee the project for Walden Media, reporting to executive vice president of production Alex Schwartz. Walden Media senior vice president of business and legal affairs Jim Meenaghan negotiated the deal on the companys behalf.
In association with The Walt Disney Company, Walden Media is producing the first live-action feature film adaptations of C.S. Lewis The Chronicles of Narnia, beginning with The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Directed by Academy Award® winner Andrew Adamson ( Shrek, Shrek 2), The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe will open in theatres on December 9, 2005. Walden Media has also partnered with Paramount Pictures and Nickelodeon Movies to produce the live action / photo real CG animation adaptation of E.B. Whites beloved classic Charlottes Web. In 2005, Walden Media and New Line Cinema will begin production on adaptations of two popular childrens books: Hoot, based on Carl Hiaasens perennial New York Times bestseller, and How to Eat Fried Worms, a feature film adaptation of Thomas Rockwells hugely popular young adult book.
About Walden Media LLC
Walden Media and its sister company Bristol Bay Productions, whose films offer uplifting stories appropriate for audiences of all ages, are part of the Anschutz Film Group (AFG). AFG is a subsidiary of The Anschutz Company, a privately owned investment and holding company with investments primarily in the areas of entertainment, media, telecommunications, natural resources, transportation, and real estate.
Founded by Cary Granat, former president of Miramax Films Dimension label, and education reformer Micheal Flaherty, Walden Media specializes in entertainment that sparks the imagination and curiosity of kids and provides parents and teachers with materials to continue the learning process.
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