Scripps Howard Prods. has optioned the film and TV rights to former slave and underground railroad conductor John P. Parker’s autobiography, “His Promised Land.”
The low six-figure option could bring the John P. Parker Historical Society about $750,000 if the book is made into a network TV miniseries, sources say. SHP president David Percelay is developing the project with George Clooney’s production company Mirador Entertainment.
The Clooney family has close ties to Scripps. Clooney worked at Scripps during summer vacations as a kid and his father, Nick Clooney, writes a column for Scripps newspaper the Cincinnati Post, whose editor was instrumental in getting Parker’s oral history published.
Mirador, run by Clooney and former ABC executive Deborah Leoni, has a first-look deal for miniseries with NBC Studios, but the project hasn’t been pitched to any webs yet. Also attached to the project as a producer is Ike Jones, whose credits include the NBC miniseries “A Woman Called Moses” and “The River Niger.”
The book is based on first-person interviews with Parker, an escaped slave who helped more than 400 slave fugitives to freedom. Daniel Ostroff at the Daniel Ostroff Agency brokered the deal.