This week in Page to Screen—PW's weekly column tracking film rights circulating and sold in Hollywood—Holly Frederick is out with a Pride and Prejudice and Zombies-like trilogy and The Familiars gets optioned by Sony.
Although we hear very few manuscripts have been sent out, business is chugging along in the book-to-screen market. Holly Frederick at Curtis Brown is shopping film rights to Jane Bites Back, which Ballantine bought at auction last summer. The book, the first in a trilogy, is by prolific YA/adult writer Michael Thomas Ford and follows a woman named Jane who runs a bookstore in a sleepy upstate New York town. Jane's quiet life is suddenly upset when she sells a novel and figures from her past resurface emerge, threatening to expose her longheld secret—that she's actually the blood-sucking incarnation of Jane Austen, undead for two centuries. Not surprisingly, the book has drawn comparison to Quirk's runaway hit, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, and is, in Frederick's wording, "a brilliantly clever and creepy read for vampire junkies and Jane Austen devotees alike."
On the sales front, Sony Animation has, according to a source, pre-empted film rights to The Familiars, which we reported last week was being shopped by Howie Sanders at UTA. The YA trilogy, by Adam Epstein and Andrew Jacobson, was just acquired, for six figures, by HC Children's and follows three boys who, relying on their "familiars," or animal counterparts, try to escape a dangerous fantasy world.