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Schnabel plays with ‘Doll’

Helmer to lense biopic of odd author

LONDON — Director Julian Schnabel is teaming up with Christine Vachon’s New York-based Killer Films and Elizabeth Karlsen’s London outfit Number 9 Films to develop “The Lonely Doll,” a biopic of the eccentric children’s author Dare Wright.

Movie will focus on the unusually close relationship between Wright, who wrote the bestselling “Lonely Doll” books, and her mother.

Karlsen and Vachon, who co-produced the upcoming HBO movie “Mrs. Harris,” separately optioned biographical material about Wright before deciding to join forces.

Karlsen optioned life rights from the author’s estate, while Vachon picked up Jean Nathan’s book “The Secret Life of the Lonely Doll: The Search for Dare Wright.”

Carl Lund is writing the script for Schnabel to direct. John Kilik, who produced Schnabel’s “Before Night Falls,” will produce, alongside Vachon, Karlsen, Pamela Koffler and Jocelyn Hayes.

Development is being financed through Number 9’s slate deal with the U.K. Film Council.

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