Talk about a graduation present for Shawn Ku.
With Ku due to receive a USC film degree Friday, Warner Bros. has signed him to a deal to develop musical “Dramarama” with the intent to direct the project. Jennifer and Suzanne Todd are producing through their Team Todd shingle along with Andrew Lazar at Mad Chance.
Ku made his directing debut at Sundance with a short musical feature, “Pretty Dead Girl.” After his film premiered, he was signed by CAA and management firm Foursight Entertainment and was pitching to Warner production prexy Jeff Robinov and exec VP Kevin McCormick a few days later.
Ku is the first USC director since Stephen Sommers to land a studio directing deal while still in college. Prior to attending USC, he received a degree in chemistry from Harvard, then danced on Broadway in “Fosse,” “Miss Saigon” and “The King and I.”
“Dramarama” is the story of a high school senior who’s bitten by the performing bug as she visits an elite high school and sees their show. When that rival school’s reigning star pushes her too far, the protagonist forms her own drama club at her run-down public school and enters a competition to vie for the winner’s title, abandoning a secure future for the unpredictable life of theater.
Mad Chance developed “Dramarama” from a pitch from playwright-turned-screenwriter Andrew Osborne. Kristen Buckley and Brian Regan also penned a rewrite and are working on the script.