Producers make ‘Killer’ deal

Chockstone, DeFina option bestselling thriller

Chockstone Pictures and DeFina Film Prods. have optioned “Killer Instinct,” Joseph Finder’s 2006 bestselling thriller.

Novel concerns a sales exec at an electronics giant in Boston who struggles to find the killer instinct that it takes to navigate the corporate world.

Chockstone’s Steve and Paula Mae Schwartz will produce with Barbara DeFina. Roger Schwartz will be co-producer.

“The book appealed to us on two levels: as a terrific thriller and also as a parody of the technology industry that is scary and funny at the same time,” Steve Schwartz said.

Steve and Paula Mae Schwartz most recently teamed with Nick Wechsler to produce “The Road,” which Dimension releases Oct. 16, and the Schwartzes are co-exec producers of the Terrence Malick-directed “Tree of Life.”

DeFina is teamed with Lisa Saltzman on “6 Foot Rule,” which Allison Anders is in talks to direct.

Finder’s “High Crimes” was turned into a 2002 Fox film, and “Paranoia” is being adapted by Barry Levy for Gaumont.

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