‘Best’ picture plan

Vietnam epic among Wasserstein's projects

NEW YORK — A feature version of David Halberstam’s Vietnam war epic “The Best and the Brightest,” and legit and pic versions of the bestselling bio of socialite politico Pamela Churchill Harriman are two of several projects former CBS news producer Claude Wasserstein has set up as part of her new Cresta Point Prods.

Cresta has also inked Nick Broomfield (helmer of the Heidi Fleiss docu and “Fetishes”) to direct an untitled pic about a rock star and his manservant. Michael Lerner, who scripted “The Brian Wilson Story” for Warner Bros., is penning the project.

In a low six-figure deal, Wasserstein and Shadow Line Prods. have optioned the Pulitzer Prize-winning “Brightest” book along with the rights to Halberstam’s life to create a political thriller about the U.S. involvement in Vietnam in the early 1960s.

Wasserstein will produce along with Shadow Line execs Alex Gibney, Tracy Dahlby and Alan Poul. Halberstam, who wrote the book based on his experiences in Vietnam for the New York Times, will serve as a consultant on the pic.

Wasserstein, the wife of Wall Street financier Bruce Wasserstein, has been actively optioning projects with financing from several private investors. Jane Leibowitz is VP of development and Tajlei Levis is VP of business affairs at Cresta Point.

Cresta Point has also optioned Sally Bedell Smith’s “Reflected Glory,” which documents the life of Harriman, former society doyenne and U.S. ambassador to France who was married to Winston Churchill’s son Randolph.

Wasserstein said the company will first set the project up in an Off Broadway legit run as a one-woman show before transforming it into a sexy comedy feature.

Broomfield, who is currently doing a BBC docu on singer Kurt Cobain, was repped by Jim Lefkowitz of CAA, and Lerner’s deal was handled by Dan Aloni of UTA.

Attorney Roger Kass repped Shadow Line in “The Best and the Brightest” negotiations. Halberstam’s deal was brokered by attorney Robert Solomon.

ICM’s Amanda Urban and Trisha Davey repped Smith in the deal for “Reflected Glory.”

Wasserstein won an Emmy for CBS News for an investigative series called “Bad Medicine” about U.S. health care.

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