Wallace, Pressfield to adapt 'Rommel' novel

Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer have acquired screen rights to “Killing Rommel,” a novel by Steven Pressfield.

Book, about a British battalion’s attempt to thwart German Field Marshal Erwin Rommel’s desert campaign, was published in the spring by Doubleday.

Randall Wallace will write the script with Pressfield. Bruckheimer will produce.

“Killing Rommel” focuses on the British Long Range Desert Group and its attempt to stop Rommel, the legendary Desert Fox who routed the British in the North African desert in 1942 and threatened to overrun the Middle East thanks to his battlefield strategies and Panzer tanks.

As scribe, Wallace has covered warfare in “Braveheart” and the Bruckheimer-produced “Pearl Harbor.” He adapted and directed the Vietnam War drama “We Were Soldiers.”

“Killing Rommel” marks Wallace’s second recent Disney deal, after saddling up to direct a Mike Rich-scripted film based on the Triple Crown-winning racehorse Secretariat and its owner, Penny Chenery.

Pressfield wrote scripts before he began turning out novels such as “The Legend of Bagger Vance” and “Gates of Fire.”

Universal is developing “Gates of Fire” with a David Self script about the Spartan stand against the Persians at Thermopylae.

The book was repped by Hotchkiss and Associates, and Wallace is repped by WMA.

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