Disney gets rights to new version of Holocaust story
Disney has acquired pic rights to a new rendition of “The Diary of Anne Frank,” to be written and helmed by David Mamet.Mamet will produce with Andrew Braunsberg. The film will be an amalgamation of the famed diary; the stage adaptation by Albert Hackett and Frances Goodrich; and Mamet’s own original take on the material that could reframe the story as a young girl’s rite of passage. Frank, who died at 15 in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, became an icon of the Holocaust after the post-war publication of the diary that she kept during the two years that her family hid in a secret attic apartment in Amsterdam. Braunsberg, best known for producing “Being There,” spent a year gathering the rights from the Anne Frank Estate as well as the estates of Hackett and Goodrich. He met with ICM’s John Burnham, who recommended Mamet. Mamet sparked to the opportunity tell the story, and he is already writing the script. A 1959 bigscreen rendition of Hackett and Goodrich’s “Diary of Anne Frank” earned an Oscar for Shelley Winters. The Frank story has been told several times on TV, most recently ABC’s 2001 Emmy-winning mini “Anne Frank: The Whole Story.” Mamet, a Pulitzer Prize winner who last wrote and directed the Chiwetel Ejiofor starrer “Redbelt,” makes his Broadway debut as a helmer in December, when he opens his new play, “Race.” The Atlantic Theater Co., which Mamet formed with William H. Macy, is bringing Mamet’s comic play “Keep Your Pantheon” to Atlantic’s Off Broadway theater. The play is expected to include a new short Mamet work called “School.” Mamet’s repped by ICM.