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Elston Gunn's WEEKLY SCRIPT REPORT (Major Sales, Events, and other News!)

- MGM has purchased the action/thriller pitch THE CLEANER for Terence Chang and John Woo's Lion Rock Prods. and Top Cow Entertainment about a high-level government operative. Top Cow is also developing THE A-TEAM and RISING STARS.

- Stephen Metcalfe will write the midlife crisis comedy script HALF A LIFETIME, a script for producers William Sherak, Jason Shuman and Blue Star Pictures/Revolution Studios, loosley based on an incident in the life of Sherak's father Tom Sherak. It will follow five friends who reunite at a baseball fantasy camp.

- John Logan will write, and Edward Zwick will produce via his Bedford Falls Co., an epic samurai drama. Warner Bros. and Radar Pictures will co-produce. Story details are being kept under wraps.

- David Self (THIRTEEN DAYS) sold his pitch, THE WING, to Universal for Mostow/Lieberman and Kennedy/Marshall to co-produce. Jonathan Mostow may direct. It's an epic action drama about the battles in the skies during World War I.

- Jeanette Winterson has written a screen adaptation of her book THE PASSION, about the relationship between a cross-dressing Venetian woman and a French soldier, though it was recently rejected by Miramax. She also is developing a picture in Europe based on her 1987 novel SEXING THE CHERRY.

- Matt Hoge will script GEEKS for New Line Cinema and producers Lawrence Bender and Laura Bickford, based on the Jon Katz book GEEKS: HOW TWO LOST BOYS RODE THE INTERNET OUT OF IDAHO. It centers on two hapless youths breaking out of smalltown Idaho using the Internet.

- John Requa and Glenn Ficarra (upcoming CATS & DOGS) is developing several projects: the zombie pic DEAD MEN WALKING, which they may direct; an untitled live-action Looney Tunes project; BAD SANTA for the Coen Bros. and MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. based on the TV show.

- Grant Vetters & David Kolbowicz have written the family comedy spec MAKING THE GRADE, purchased by Cine Action, about an 8-year old orphan who freelances as a test model for pontential adoptive parents. Richard Roy is attached to direct.

I don't know what my pick of the week is. It's Christmas, so I'm picking them all. John Woo likes THE CLEANER, John Logan/Ed Zwick are developing an epic samurai pic and David Self is working on a World War I project. (After several World War II projects the past few years, this may be a welcome change). Wow. Sounds awesome, right? And hopefully, Requa's and Ficarra's Looney Tunes project is funny. I've heard great things about CATS & DOGS. HALF A LIFETIME, MAKING THE GRADE and the Winterson projects sound good too. Then, there's GEEKS. If Michael De Luca and Lawrence Bender are excited about that project, then I'd love to hear more about it.

Cross your fingers for knock-out scripts in 2001.

-- Elston Gunn

(Sources: The Hollywood Reporter, Variety)

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