‘Heist’ pic a steal for Universal

Studio pitch to prexy pays off

Universal Pictures has paid mid to high six figures to pick up family comedy spec “The Great Hartford Elementary Heist,” penned by first-time feature scribes John Pardee and Joey Murphy.

Pic, which has yet to land a producer,is described as a kids version of “Ocean’s Eleven.” It centers on an 11-year-old kid who rallies a group of his peers to recover property wrongfully confiscated by their evil school principal.

Pitch was made to Universal Pictures’ production prexy Mary Parent and VP of production Dylan Clark who will oversee pic for the studio.

U beat out a rival bid from New Line; DreamWorks, Columbia and Miramax also were in the mix.

Pardee and Murphy, repped by Paradigm, previously wrote for sitcoms including “Bob Patterson,” “Some of My Best Friends” (aka ‘Kiss Me Guido’), “Cybill” and “The Jeff Foxworthy Show.”

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