Rogue bets its money on ‘Lottery’

Williams to write, White to direct 'Ticket'

“Welfare Queen” scribe Abdul Williams scored another payday from U’s specialty folk, this one low- to mid-six figures to pen “Lottery Ticket” for Rogue.

Musicvid director Erik White will helm the pic produced by Evolution’s Oren Koules and Mark Berg.

Rogue bought the urban comedy based on Williams’ treatment. Story revolves around an 18-year-old living in the projects who must keep his winning lottery ticket a secret over a three day weekend.

White, who grew up in the projects, said lottery tickets were a topic of endless discussion in his neighborhood.

“We were always wondering why some old guy in Utah who already had two houses was winning,” White said. “This is all about the anticipation.”

He hashed the idea out with Williams, who likens the story to “The Lord of the Rings,” noting, “you have something so valuable you can’t let it off your person, but in a way it’s almost a burden.”

Besides “Welfare Queen,” a Focus pic Queen Latifah is producing as a starring vehicle, Williams is working on a biopic about the mid-’80s music group New Edition for BET Films. He penned “Bling” for Miramax and “The Wayne Haydin Story” for the former MGM regime and previously toiled in development for Carl Franklin and Denzel Washington.

Evolution packaged the project for Rogue with Williams and White, both clients. “Lottery Ticket” reps White’s first feature helming assignment. He’s directed musicvids for Chris Brown, OutKast and Diddy.

Evolution’s Brad Kaplan and Andrew Wilson manage Williams and White. Jon Huddle of UTA reps Williams and Charles King at William Morris reps White.

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