Deadline reports that Universal Pictures has made the first major Hollywood deal of 2024, pre-emptively purchasing the short story package Long Lost, which has the legendary Steven Spielberg attached to produce through his company Amblin Partners.
Long Lost is a 50 page short story written by Colin Bannon, who previously wrote and directed the 2009 comedy Love Conquers Paul. Bannon will be writing the screenplay adaptation of his story, which is said to be “in the vein of What Lies Beneath and Rosemary’s Baby“. The story centers on a recently married woman whose life is upended when her husband’s long-lost wife shockingly returns after she was believed to be dead, sparking fears that she’s hatching a sinister plan to reclaim what was once hers.
How does the maker of a little-seen indie from 15 years ago land a deal like this? Well, in addition to making Love Conquers Paul, Bannon has also gotten his scripts featured on the Black List a record seven times. Deadline notes that he has “sold the specs Ultra to Tri-Star Pictures and First Ascent to Netflix. His psychological thriller Holdout is readying at Netflix, with Elisabeth Moss attached to star and direct.”
Spielberg’s Amblin Partners will be producing Long Lost alongside Simon Kinberg and Audrey Chon of Genre Pictures, as well as Scott Glassgold of Ground Control Entertainment.
Bannon is represented by Verve, Ground Control, and Ben Rubinfeld. According to Deadline, this is the 12th recent deal Verve and Glassgold have made for an unpublished short story (and the second recent short story deal that involves Kinberg). Other deals in this lineup include “the Akela Cooper-attached It’s Over to Sony with Roy Lee; the Aaron Jayh short story The Dwelling to Amazon with Michael B Jordan starring and producing; Occupant to New Line with Zach Cregger producing alongside Lee and Glassgold; We Used to Live Here to Netflix with Blake Lively to star; I Think My Mother-In-Law Is Trying to Kill Me to Sony 3000; Wilderness Reform to Paramount; I Am Not Alone to Netflix with Misha Green writing and directing and Jessica Chastain attached to star; Run For Your Life with Sam Hargrave directing; and Caretaker with Syndey Sweeney starring.”
How does Long Lost sound to you? Are you interested in seeing a Spielberg-produced thriller “in the vein of What Lies Beneath and Rosemary’s Baby? Let us know by leaving a comment below.