Universal buys Hillenbrand’s ‘Unbroken’

Pact renews relationship with 'Seabiscuit' author

Universal Pictures has acquired the rights to author Laura Hillenbrand’s “Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption” with Francis Lawrence in talks to helm.

Tome is based on the true story of Louis Zamperini, a track runner who competed in the 1936 Berlin Olympics and went on to fight in WWII as an Air Force bombardier.

Story centers on Zamperini’s fight for survival in a POW camp after he crashed in the Pacific and was captured by the Japanese.

Universal acquired the rights to Hillenbrand’s earlier book, “Seabiscuit.” The film adaptation grossed more than $100 million worldwide.

If Lawrence’s deal comes together he will also produce with Erwin Stoff and Matt Baer. Mick Garris exec produces.

Lawrence most recently directed Fox’s “Water for Elephants” with Reese Witherspoon, Robert Pattinson and Christoph Waltz.

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