Studio begins exploring Lew Archer franchise

Warner Bros. is launching development of mystery writer Ross Macdonald’s Lew Archer character and has set up an adaptation of “The Galton Case” at studio-based Silver Pictures with Random House Films.

Studio has been in talks with rights holder Stephen White for the past month.

Macdonald’s 1959 “The Galton Case” is the eighth book in the Archer series. The private detective is hired to track down rich boy Anthony Galton, who dropped out of sight more than two decades earlier, and discovers a nasty murder.

Joel Silver will produce; Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman exec produce. Heineman brought the project into the studio. Random House Films topper Peter Gethers and Stephen White will also exec produce.

Warner made two films starring Paul Newman as Lew Harper, based on the Archer character: 1966’s “Harper,” written by William Goldman, and 1975 sequel “The Drowning Pool.”

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