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Warners makes ‘News’

Forman to helm comic crime caper; Wright to pen

Warner Bros. Pictures is closing a deal to produce “Bad News” with Phoenix Pictures, with Milos Forman to direct. Pic will be an adaptation of the Donald Westlake novel that was published in April by Time Warner imprint Mysterious Press.

Doug Wright (“Quills”) is currently penning the script for “Bad News,” a comic caper in which career crook John Dortmunder signs on for an underhanded takeover of an Indian gambling casino. However, he soon realizes that he’s set himself up to be ripped off — unless he can rip off his partner first.

Warners senior VP Bob Brassell will oversee the project’s development with Phoenix VP Brad Fischer.

Forman previously worked with Phoenix chairman and CEO Mike Medavoy on films such as “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” “Amadeus,” “Hair,” “Valmont” and “The People vs. Larry Flynt.”

MGM recently released “What’s the Worst That Could Happen?,” which was based on the Westlake novel of the same name.

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