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MGM gets ‘Munchies’

Studio jumps on teen horror wagon

In a move that seems to indicate MGM is still very much in the feature film production business, the studio has made an outright mid-six-figure buy of David Kukoff and Matt Roshkow’s spec script “Munchies” for Davis Entertainment.

The teen comedy, described as “Clueless” meets “Night of the Living Dead,” focuses on four unpopular, anorexic high school girls known derisively to their peers as the “stick chicks.” After a brief stint at a diet clinic, however, the quartet return healthy, happy and eating everything in sight … including human flesh.

Davis Entertainment’s John Davis, Michael Hackett and David Solomon will produce; Anya Kochoff will co-produce.

MGM hopes to get the project before the cameras as early as the first quarter of 1999.

Several other studios, including New Line, expressed interest in the project, but after reading the script Saturday morning, MGM president Michael Nathanson took it off the market with a preemptive $400,000 against $700,000 bid Saturday night.

“It’s really well-written, wickedly funny and very commercial for today’s market,” said Nathanson. The studio topper predicted the film would tap into the much ballyhooed teenage female audience, which has propelled horror pics such as “Scream” and “I Know What You Did Last Summer” into the B.O. spotlight.

“All the other ones are the same: horror,” said Nathanson. “This doesn’t fit into the same cookie cutter mold. It’s a comedy with some wicked things in it.”

Studio production veep Yalda Tehranian brought the spec into MGM.

Davis Entertainment-based producers Hackett and Solomon have recently set up several projects, including “Edward 39” at DreamWorks and sci-fi actioner “Eclipse” at Fox.

The writers were repped by Paradigm’s Valarie Phillips and Matt Bedrosian and attorney Dave Feldman of Bloom, Hergott.