'Witch Mountain' director to helm adaptation

Paramount Pictures has acquired the Sarah Mlynowski young-adult novel “Gimme a Call” and will develop it as a directing vehicle for “Race to Witch Mountain” helmer Andy Fickman.

Fickman will produce with his Oops Doughnuts partner Betsy Sullenger.

A high school senior who is generally dissatisfied with her life mistakenly drops her phone in a fountain. When she fishes it out, she discovers the only call she can make is to herself — at age 14, when anything seemed possible.

The book will be published by Delacorte in May 2010.

Fickman said the author had been on his radar because he has an 11-year-old daughter. He got an early look at the book when it was shopped by Endeavor and the Dail Agency.

“This reminded me of a mix between the John Hughes movies and ‘Back to the Future,’ and who wouldn’t want to call their earlier selves, even if just to remind them their yearbook photo will be making people laugh for the rest of their lives, and they should get a haircut or at least spend five minutes making sure they look good,” said Fickman, who met with several studios but went with Paramount.

Fickman last week attached himself to direct Disney’s “Monster Attack Network,” the Scott Elder and Josh Harmon adaptation of the AIT/Planet Lar graphic novel (Daily Variety, March 16). He is reading scripts but hasn’t decided on which film to next direct.

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