The Walt Disney Co. is in early negotiations to give scribe John Lee Hancock (“A Perfect World”) the chance to make his directorial debut with “Rookie,” the studio’s Mike Rich script.
Producers are Mark Johnson, Gordon Gray and Mark Ciardi. Pic will be overseen at the Mouse House by Buena Vista Motion Picture Group prexy Nina Jacobson along with senior veep Greg Hoffman. If Hancock comes aboard as expected, project could begin lensing within months.
Based on a true story, “Rookie” centers on a man in his mid-30s who trades teaching high school in Texas for following his dream — becoming a professional baseball player (a pitcher for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays).
Hancock penned “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,” helmed by Clint Eastwood and produced by Johnson. He is rewriting “Spygame” for helmer Tony Scott, and did a rewrite on the Jerry Bruckheimer pic “Take Down.” With Johnson, he produced “My Dog Skip.”
Gray and Ciardi inked an overall deal with Revolution Studios; and are producing “The New Guy” there.
Rich, repped by UTA, penned “Finding Forrester,” which is being directed by Gus Van Sant.
Hancock is repped by CAA.