An as-yet-unreleased book on the Osage Reign of Terror murders is attracting considerable amounts of attention from movie producers.
Reports about the movers and shakers interested in obtaining film rights to the story have dropped names like George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Leonardo DiCaprio.
It now appears that the bids are in for the book, entitled "Killers Of The Flower Moon: An American Crime And The Birth Of The FBI." Written by David Grann, a staff writer for New Yorker magazine, the book is expected to be published either this fall or next spring by Doubleday/Penguin Random House.
A recent article in one Hollywood journal said the bid had been awarded to a Houston investor: "Imperative Entertainment has paid $5 million and won the rights to make a movie out of David Grann’s book Killers Of The Flower Moon: An American Crime And The Birth Of The FBI, which Doubleday is publishing next spring."
The development was said to be "a stunning end to the biggest and wildest book rights auction in memory."
"In what appears to be the most competitive book-rights auction so far this year, just about every studio is in the mix," according to a spokesperson for CAA, which is said to be brokering the deal.
Imperative reportedly involves partners Dan Friedkin and Bradley Thomas. Friedkin is a Houston-based entrepreneur who made his fortune through automotive and other ventures. It is said that he fully funds Imperative.
It is a nonfiction story set in the 1920s, when the richest people per capita in the world were Oklahoma’s Osage Indians. Oil had been discovered beneath their land and they were granted rights that provided a percentage of the revenues pouring in from oil companies. Then, mysteriously, they began to be killed off. Many who dared to investigate the killings met a similar fate. In desperation, the Osage turned to the newly created Bureau of Investigation, becoming the FBI’s first major homicide case. Yet corruption from oil money permeated even the FBI and the White House.
Grann previously wrote "The Lost City Of Z" — for which a film is currently in production.
When the initial story broke two weeks ago, prospective bidders were reported to be:
— Clooney, Amy Pascal and Grant Heslov’s Smokehouse for Sony;
— Jason Blum and Scott Rudin for Universal;
— New Regency and Fox with Plan B, whose Brad Pitt, Dede Gardner and Jeremy Kleiner developed Lost
City Of Z;
— Warner Bros and RatPac,
— Anonymous Content.
— DreamWorks possibly will enter the fray with Kennedy Marshall, but no bid from them yet.