Bonechiller Receives Support From The Harold Greenberg Fund

Giller Prize Winner 419 Supported by Astral’s Harold Greenberg Fund’s Story Optioning Program
Four Additional Projects Supported Including the Adaptation of Graham McNamee’s
Bonechiller by Black List-Featured Emerging Writer Imran Zaidi

Toronto, October 31, 2012- Astral’s Harold Greenberg Fund is thrilled to announce that Giller Prize winner 419 is among the five projects recently supported by the Story Optioning Program. The novel, by Will Ferguson, is being adapted for feature film by Sarrazin Couture Entertainment.

Also supported by the Story Optioning Program is Graham McNamee’s award-winning novel Bonechiller, from producers Michael Solomon, Jonathan Finkelstein and Allan Joli-Coeur of Apartment 11. Signed on to write the adaptation is Black List-featured emerging scriptwriter Imran Zaidi.

“The Story Optioning Program is a unique opportunity for Canadian producers to acquire strong properties with a built-in fan base,” says John Galway, the Fund’s English-Language Program President. “We’re proud to be able to help strengthen the ties between film and publishing industries, and to build on the successes of the Canadian literary community.”

419 is the story of a woman who goes to Nigeria obsessed with avenging an internet scam that impoverished her father. The Giller Prize winning novel will be adapted for the screen by Humanitas Prize and Gemini Award winner Suzette Couture. “Ferguson’s novel about the collision between the First World and Africa is suspenseful yet ultimately moving and will translate into a powerful movie with international appeal,” says producer Pierre Sarrazin.

Graham McNamee’s Bonechiller is a teenage thriller set in an isolated Canadian winter ghost town. While the property received a lot of interest from industry-leading scriptwriters, Apartment 11 producers felt Imran was the perfect fit. His debut screenplay, Jurassic Park, was recently featured on Hollywood’s coveted Black List, featuring the best unproduced screenplays of the year. According to Jonathan Finkelstein, “Imran sent us a spec script that caught my attention and proved that he has perfect pitch for teenage dialogue, and a capacity for writing humour — an essential counterweight to the tension in Bonechiller that will be key to delighting the audience.”

Projects approved this quarter include:

SCRIPT DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM

Story Optioning

419 by Will Ferguson
Sarrazin Productions Inc.
Producer: Pierre Sarrazin
Screenwriter: Suzette Couture

A Good Girl by Amy Jones
Story Engine Pictures Inc. and A71 Productions Inc.
Producer: Marc Almon
Screenwriter: Jonathan Williams

Airborn by Kenneth Oppel
DHX Media (Halifax) Ltd.
Producer: Michael Donovan
Screenwriter: Kenneth Oppel

Bonechiller by Graham McNamee
Apartment 11 Productions Inc.
Producers: Jonathan Finkelstein and Allan Joli-Coeur
Screenwriter: Imran Zaidi

The Mistress of Nothing by Kate Pullinger
Markham Street Films Inc.
Producers: Judy Holm and Michael McNamara
Screenwriter: Elke Town

The Story Optioning Program was established to build upon the critical funding provided by the Script Development Program, helping Canadian filmmakers option the country’s finest literary works for feature film adaptation. The program receives a yearly contribution of $300,000 from The Movie Network. The story optioning applications are reviewed each quarter by the English-Language Committee of Astral’s Harold Greenberg Fund, which includes Suzette Couture, Damon D’Oliveira, Melanie Friesen, John Galway, Bryn Matthews, Jane Tattersall and Kevin Wright.

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