Scribe in ‘Power’ play as U ponies up bigtime

'Duff' bidding war comes to an end

Ending a bidding war with DreamWorks and several other studios, Universal is understood to have paid $900,000 against $1.25 million for playwright Stephen Belber’s first spec script, “The Power of Duff.”

Belber is best known for his incredible case of beginner’s luck: Scribe penned the 2004 legiter “Match,” which had the highly unusual distinction of having its world preem directly on Broadway at the Plymouth Theater. He’s also co-written HBO mini “The Laramie Project” and the feature script for Richard Linklater pic “Tape.”

Now, in “Duff,” Belber has the support of U-based Marc Platt Prods., for which Marc Platt and prexy Abby Wolf-Weiss will produce.

“Duff” follows what happens when, after the death of his father, a Rochester, N.Y., TV news anchor begins praying aloud for things to happen while reading the evening news. When his prayers start coming true, it ignites controversy about whether he’s a prophet, a pundit or a charlatan.

Platt met Belber last year at his Broadway play “Match” and the project was brought into the shingle by Wolf-Weiss.

Belber’s repped by BWCS.

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