Joe Kissack, former exec VP of syndication for Sony Pictures TV, has paid about $2.5 million for worldwide rights to the story of three Mexican fishermen who survived for nine months in a 23-foot fishing boat that drifted 5,000 miles before they were rescued off the coast of Australia.
“I’m looking to produce a theatrical movie, and a book, about what I regard as a miraculous story of faith, hope and survival,” Kissack said.
His company, Ezekiel 22, hasn’t chosen a writer yet, but Kissack said he’ll work closely with whomever is chosen, having spent many hours in Mexico with the men since he learned about their ordeal two months ago.
His next move, Kissack said, is to draw up a proposal for submission to a major studio to secure financing for a movie and a book. Based in Atlanta, he is exec VP of sales and distribution for August House, a publisher specializing in children’s books and folk tale anthologies.
Kissack said any movie he produces will stress “the faith element — these men prayed every day and read the Bible.” Five men started out on the boat, which lost fuel and got swept up in a raging storm that drove the vessel disastrously off course. Unable to survive on a diet of raw fish and turtles, two of the men died during the nine months and had to be pushed overboard.
Throughout Latin America, the men have become known as the “Tres Pescadores.”