New department at work on two projects

Boston-based Velveteen Films has set up a book-to-film department, launching with two projects being developed simultaneously for page and screen.

Editor Brin Stevens will oversee the new department, currently at work on true tale “Slow Walk Down” and Iraqi love story “Trip of a Million.” Velveteen aims to produce the bigscreen incarnations while Stevens edits the books and works to pair the projects with a publisher.

Velveteen’s Rebecca Cook will pen the screenplay for “Trip of a Million,” a book co-written by activist Nesreen Barwari. The Iraqi scribe also is coordinating financing efforts in Kurdistan, where the pic is targeting a summer 2011 shoot.

“Slow Walk Down,” also to be adapted by Cook, follows a Harvard alum’s battle with mental illness. Fundraising is likely to begin in the fall, according to Cook.

Velveteen’s new department will aim to sell a title’s book and film rights in tandem, with publication ideally timed to production of the pic.

Previous Velveteen movies include “Shooting Livien” and “A Touch of Fate.” Company is financing “Hickory Nation,” with Kris Kristofferson and Molly Sims attached.

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