This week in Page to Screen—PW's weekly column tracking film rights circulating and sold in Hollywood—Stephen King's latest draws interest, along with Stuart Neville's The Twelve.
Rand Holston at CAA is currently out with the film rights to Stephen King's forthcoming novel, Under the Dome. Scribner is publishing in November and Holston is co-agenting with Darhansoff, Verrill, Feldman. (King's literary agent is Chuck Verrill.) The novel follows the members of a small Maine town inexplicably sealed off one day by an invisible and impenetrable force field. Stranded inside the dome—which is erected at a random and unfortunate circumference that separates those within the town—a group of locals, led by an Iraq war vet, band together to fight rising social unrest and, ultimately, the barrier itself. King announced that he had finished the book back in January and, in his column for Entertainment Weekly, spoke of its massive size—it's more than 1,000 pages. The heft may be making it tough for Hollywood execs to see the story working as a feature; one insider said all the activity in the book is causing some to think Dome makes more sense as a miniseries. Other massive 1,000-plus page works by King—like It and The Stand—both wound up on the small screen, the former as a TV movie and the latter as a miniseries.
Another manuscript getting some interest on the left coast is Stuart Neville's debut thriller, The Ghosts of Belfast, which Soho Press is releasing in October. (The book was just published in the U.K. under the title The Twelve, by Harvill Secker.) The Northern Ireland-set novel follows a veteran named Gerry Fegan who's haunted by the ghosts of those he killed in combat. Unable to deal with the spirits, Fegan attempts to carry out their wishes—exact revenge on those responsible for their deaths, from the politicians pulling the strings to the low-level criminals carrying out the orders. Joel Gotler at IPG is shopping the film rights and said he's "weighing a couple of offers" from different producers.