Though it’s only been on the market for a mere twenty-four hours, MEDUSA AND ATHENA has already landed on every desk in town. The red hot fantasy spec out from Paradigm and Benderspink is quickly becoming this month’s top read, heading into its first round of territories.
My sources confirm that the highly sought-after YA script is into Paramount via Jerry Bruckheimer Films per his first-look deal, and that Anonymous Content brought it into Disney, Tripp Vinson’s Vinson Films into Fox, Benderspink into New Line Cinema, Todd Garner’s Broken Road Productions into Sony via their first-look deal, Weed Road Pictures into Warner Bros., and that Scott Stuber took it into Universal under his Bluegrass Films banner, which has a first-look pact with the studio.
Pitched as YA tentpole and the first installment of a franchise, Medusa And Athena was penned by up-and-coming scribe Nir Paniry. Plot details are kept mum, but my sources tell me that the spec tells a new origin story for Medusa the gorgon, the iconic figure from Greek literature whose hair was made of deadly vipers and gaze turned men to stone. The titular Athena of course refers to the Greek deity of the same name, who was known as the goddess of wisdom, justice, arts, strategy, and a companion to heroes. The Greek city of Athens derives its name from the character.
Paniry quickly emerged on the scene as a genre writer to watch for after gaining steam from his sci-fi/drama feature Extracted, which Paniry wrote and directed. Extracted starred Grimm‘s Sasha Roiz and Crazy, Stupid, Love‘s Jenny Mollen and was nominated for SXSW’s audience award.
Spec is now into:
Anonymous Content into Disney
Benderspink into New Line
Bruckheimer into Paramount
Vinson into Fox
Stuber/Bluegrass into Universal
Broken Road into Sony
Weed Road into Warner Bros.
Stay tuned for more info on this project as it develops!