Col woos Kumble to helm ‘Screenplay’

Pic to be produced by Sony-based Konrad Films

Helmer-screenwriter Roger Kumble is in final negotiations to helm Columbia Pictures’ imaginatively (if temporarily) named romantic comedy “Screenplay Without a Title Yet.”

Kumble’s first outing as a helmer was last year’s “Cruel Intentions.” It proved a low-cost success for Sony, which made the pic in partnership with Newmarket Capital Group and Summit Entertainment: The film grossed just under $40 million in the U.S.

Original Films’ Neal Moritz, who produced “Cruel,” will reteam with Kumble on his next project, an original comedy set in New York for which Sony will retain worldwide rights.

But if Kumble’s “Cruel Intentions” was cheap to make, acquiring the next screenplay he’ll direct for Sony was anything but: Col chairman Amy Pascal bought “Screenplay” for $1 million against $1.5 million from “South Park” staff writer Nancy Pimental. Pic will be produced by Kathy Konrad’s Sony-based Konrad Films.

Story follows a club-hopping hipster who believes she’s finally met her soulmate. Knowing she can find him the next morning at a wedding party, she is horrified to find that he’s the groom.

Kumbel’s screenwriting credits include “Unveiled,” “National Lampoon’s Senior Trip” and “Provocateur.” He also co-wrote the forthcoming Warner Bros. release “Gossip.”

Col senior veepee of production Ricki Strauss will supervise the project with creative exec Shannon Gaulding.

Kumble is being repped by UTA; Pimental was repped in her deal by Endeavor.

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