Studio shells out for true-life mystery story

Paramount Pictures and J.J. Abrams are going house hunting.

The studio has paid mid-six figures for a New York Times article written by Penelope Green about a Gotham home whose owners discovered secret panels and hidden clues that led them on a mystery-filled scavenger hunt.

Abrams will produce the film via his Par-based Bad Robot shingle. Maya Forbes and Wally Wolodarsky have been tapped to write.

The Fifth Avenue home, described as a giant ’20s-era co-op with Central Park views, was gutted several years ago at the behest of a couple, who later moved in with their four children. An architectural designer who oversaw the rehab job left behind a series of messages, games and treasures, unbeknownst to the family, who eventually unraveled a mystery that featured a poem, a book, a soundtrack and a host of historical figures.

Green’s article was published in Thursday’s edition of the Times.

Abrams most recently produced another Gotham-set tale for the studio in “Cloverfield.” He has a number of producing projects set up at the studio, including “Morning Glory” and “Hot for Teacher.”

Forbes and Wolodarsky penned upcoming Rainn Wilson starrer “The Rocker” for Fox Atomic. Their credits also include DreamWorks’ “Monsters vs. Aliens,” which is in production.

The writing duo are repped by ICM.

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