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Rudin driven to purchase fact-based ‘Albert’ book

Paterniti's Einstein brain novel snatched up

Paramount-based producer Scott Rudin has preemptively purchased the nonfiction book “Driving Mr. Albert” by Mike Paterniti, based on his October 1997 Harper’s article.

The book, only delivered to Paterniti’s ICM agents last Friday and due in print July 11 from Dial Press, immediately attracted interest from, among others, Disney-based Sonnenfeld/Josephson.

According to sources close to the negotiations, Rudin read the novel overnight, fell in love with it and acted swiftly, making an offer so significant that it put all other candidates out of the running.

Book is a nonfiction account of the relationship between the author and Thomas Harvey, an 84-year-old pathologist who performed the autopsy on Albert Einstein in 1955, removed the brain of the renowned scientist and took it home, storing it in a Tupperware bowl filled with formaldehyde.

The author spent 10 days with Harvey, driving the old doctor cross-country from New Jersey to California, where Harvey plans to show the brain to Einstein’s daughter as well as a group of high school students.

The original Harper’s article won the 1997 National Magazine Award for feature writing.

Paterniti is repped by Ron Bernstein and Sloan Harris at ICM.

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