Michael Jaffe Films has acquired rights to produce a TV movie based on the story of Jim and Jennifer Stolpa — the young couple and their baby who survived being stranded in the snow for eight days — for what’s believed to be a record rights fee of over $ 500,000.
Jaffe, which recently produced the high-profile vidpic “Amy Fisher: My Story, ” will produce the project in association with Spectacor Films for CBS.
The company emerged with the rights after a bidding war that involved more than 70 producers and ultimately boiled down to five production companies: Jaffe , ABC Prods., RHI Entertainment, Citadel and Alexander-Enright.
According to sources, each of those companies made presentations to the couple last week in Reno and a decision was made late Friday by the Stolpas in conjunction with their representative, agency Athletes & Artists Inc.
Both Stolpas lost part of their feet despite surviving the ordeal.
Escalating rights fees have placed added pressure on producers, however, since that portion of a movie’s budget doesn’t make it onto the screen, while network license fees have generally remained flat in the $ 2.6 million-to-$ 2.8 million-per-picture range.