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Fine Line groups ‘Grounding’ prod’n

Horovitz to oversee the project

NEW YORK — Fine Line has won a competitive auction for the screen option to Julian F. Thompson’s novel “The Grounding of Group 6” on behalf of “Forrest Gump” producer Wendy Finerman.

The book, published by Henry Holt in 1997, is a teen drama in the vein of “The Breakfast Club.” It follows a 17-year-old whose older brother has disappeared from a mental institution. The teen embarks on a cross-country journey to find his brother and along the way develops a romantic relationship with one of his missing sib’s old friends.

Purchase is a further example of the New Line arthouse arm’s continuing expansion beyond acquisition and into production and development. This past year it has commenced work on David Mamet’s “State and Main,” Lars Von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark” and Adam Brooks’ “The Invisible Circus.”

Wendy Finerman Prods., which opened a Gotham-based development office early this summer, banded with New Line to produce the recently completed “Sugar and Spice.” In September, Paramount optioned Nancy R. Julian’s children’s novel “Miss Pickett” for Finerman to exec produce under the Nickelodeon Movies banner.

“Grounding” was brought into Fine Line by story editor Meredith Finn and taken to Finerman by creative exec Jennifer Goldstein. Fine Line senior veep Rachel Horovitz will oversee the project for the company, reporting to prexy Mark Ordesky.

Thompson was repped in the deal by the Gotham-based Curtis Brown Agency.

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