New Line fashions tent under ‘Freaks’

Magill inks deal for paranormal comic-actioner

Novelist-turned-screenwriter Peter Magill has inked a deal with New Line Cinema for the sci-fi spec “Freaks,” for low- against mid-six figures.

“Freaks” is a comic action/adventure about a group of tabloid reporters who investigate the paranormal.

New Line wants to make the pic as an event, special effects movie in the vein of “Men in Black” and “Ghostbusters.” New Line Prods. prexy Michael De Luca sees the pic as a potential franchise for the studio.

Although Magill has never had a movie produced, one of his earlier scripts, the horror spec “www.death.com,” caused a stir several months ago. But “Freaks” is the first project he has sold.

Mark Gordon and Gary Levinsohn’s Paramount-based Mutual Film Co. will produce the pic for New Line, which will retain worldwide rights.

The financing and distribution accord between the two companies is not yet finalized.

CAA, which reps Magill, took the script to New Line vice president of production Donna Langley and Mutual’s Tania Landau at about the same time. Once Mutual came aboard as a producer, New Line jumped in quickly to acquire the script.

New Line’s senior vice president of business affairs, Suzanne Rosencrans, negotiated on behalf of the studio.