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Finnegan trees poem

Deal inked for five-against-six figures

It’s not everyday that a poem is optioned for the bigscreen, but veteran producer and director William Finnegan’s Finnegan-Pinchuk Productions has just paid a sizable five-against-six figure price for “Branches,” a novel in verse by Mitch Cullin.

A noir portrait of a violent Southern sheriff, “Branches” will be adapted for the screen by Burt Kennedy, who helmed the 1976 version of Jim Thompson’s classic crime novel, “The Killer Inside Me.” Finnegan told Daily Variety that he has yet to find a distributor.

The book, due out from the small Long Island-based Permanent Press this month, features original artwork from the Japanese visual artist Ryuzo Kikushima. The sale to Finnegan was repped by Jeff Aghassi of the Alpern Group.

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