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New Line in ‘Time’ for deal

Pitt, Grey, Aniston, Wechsler to produce adaptation

New Line Cinema has bought novelist Audrey Niffenegger’s “The Time Traveler’s Wife.” The film will be produced by Brad Pitt, Brad Grey, Jennifer Aniston and Nick Wechsler.

Novel is about a man who has a gene that causes him to involuntarily time-travel, appearing at different times in his life. The condition is brought on by stress and bad memories, and his lover has no idea when or if he will reappear as he is sent back to various traumatic moments.

The author is a visual artist who teaches the art of book assemblage at Chicago’s Columbia College Center for Book & Paper Arts. She wrote the novel, a loose modern retelling of “The Odyssey,” after being granted a fellowship last year.

Niffenegger sent her book unsolicited to lit agent Joe Regal, who plucked it from his slush pile, signed her and landed a publishing deal at MacAdam/Cage. UTA hooked the movie deal. Book will be the imprint’s lead fall title, and paperback rights have been sold to Harcourt Trade.

Kristine Hahn will oversee the pic for the producers, with Renee Witt and Dorian Howard shepherding it for New Line. Pic will be a co-production between Wechsler’s Industry and the as-yet-unnamed production shingle formed by Pitt, Grey and Aniston.

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