New Line Cinema has paid $200,000 against $600,000 in tuition for the rights to James Finney Boylan’s comic novel “Guide to Colleges of New England” for Renny Harlin and Geena Davis’ the Forge to produce, the studio confirmed Monday.
Boylan’s manuscript has not yet been published, but is out to pubs in Gotham. New Line got the jump on the early draft through ICM, which reps the scribe as well as Davis and Harlin.
Plot is about a father and son and their journey to New England to check out potential schools. During the trip, they are joined by a number of quirky relatives as they explore the Northeast. New Line execs likened its tone to those of “Flirting With Disaster,” “Animal House” and “Vacation.”
No scripter, helmer or talent is attached.
For Harlin and Davis, the project is a change of tone from the more action-driven “The Long Kiss Goodnight” and “Cutthroat Island,” their last two pics.
“It’s a departure, but it’s very real and it’s very funny,” Harlin said.
He added that he and Davis liked the originality of the project. “It deals on a level of two generations — kids going to college and their issues and dilemmas in life, and their parents, who are going through their own issues,” he said.The Forge will be the only producer. Amanda Stern, prexy of production for the Forge, will oversee the proj-ect.
New Line senior VP of production Lynn Harris will handle it for the studio.
Deal for Boylan was brokered by ICM agents Kris Dahl in New York and Alicia Gordon in L.A.
Boylan has written three other novels: “Remind Me to Murder You Later,” “The Constellations” and “The Plan-ets.”