Franklin to enlist gov't specialists as advisers on Gulf War drama

SeaCastle Films, a newly formed shingle with offices in Los Angeles and Palm Beach, has paid Jo Franklin $1.4 million for the book and script rights to her political thriller “The Wing of the Falcon.”

Franklin, formerly a senior Washington producer of “The MacNeil-Lehrer Report” and known for her documentary series that includes “Saudi Arabia,” “The Oil Kingdoms” and “Days of Rage: The Young Palestinians,” wrote the screenplay and will make her feature directing debut with the $16 million-budgeted “Wing.”

No start date or cast is set.

Set in the Persian Gulf, “Wing” centers on military and intelligence operations during the Gulf War.

“If this book is read for no other reason,” said Gen. Norman Schwarzkopf in a publication press release, “it should be read for its vivid portrayal of history, culture, society, politics and challenges in the Arab world. Jo Franklin understands the subtleties of these forces and can write about them better than anyone.”

Personal experience

During Operation Desert Storm, Franklin worked with the Special Operations Forces. Her personal experiences in Saudi Arabia formed the genesis for her book.

Franklin plans to enlist technical advisers on her film, including members of the Office of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and various officers with the Special Operations Forces.

SeaCastle, financed by a consortium of private investors and run by prexy Kitty Omura, has also acquired a soon-to-be-released novel by Robert Shaffer, set in the turn-of-the-century South Pacific, and “The Arc of Kublai Kahn,” written by Franklin, set in Mongolia and China.

SeaCastle’s stated focus is on projects rooted in real political, economic and cultural issues with international appeal.

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