Harr's tome details search for Caravaggio masterpiece

Miramax Films has optioned “The Lost Painting,” a nonfiction book by Jonathan Harr to be adapted by Christopher Monger. Zachary Feuer will produce.

Harr’s last book, “A Civil Action,” won the National Book Award and was turned into a John Travolta film by Disney. Published last year by Random House, “The Lost Painting” chronicles a quest to locate “The Taking of the Christ,” a lost masterpiece by mercurial 16th century Italian painter Caravaggio. A couple of clues led to the discovery of the dust- and grime-covered canvas in a house owned by Jesuit priests in Ireland.

Monger and Feuer brought the project to Miramax. Monger had once done a project for production prexy Keri Putnam while she was an exec at HBO.

“We haven’t seen a forensic, ‘CSI’-type of film set in the art world, and there are compelling characters like one in Ireland who dreamed of making one great discovery and was well into his career when this happened,” said Putnam.

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