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Lionsgate attaches Nolfi to develop, direct ‘XOXO’

'Adjustment Bureau' helmer tackles spec from 'Black Swan' scribe

Lionsgate has inked a development deal with director George Nolfi (“The Adjustment Bureau”), attaching him to helm and oversee a rewrite of social-media thriller “XOXO.”

Written on spec by “Black Swan” scribe Mark Heyman, project is an elevated genre tale set in the world of Facebook, where things aren’t always as they seem. Nolfi will supervise a rewrite by Heyman.

Darren Aronofsky and Michael London (“Sideways”) will produce “XOXO” through their respective shingles Protozoa Pictures and Groundswell Prods. The latter’s Kelly Mullen brought in the project and will be involved in a producing capacity.

Story follows an on-the-rise exec who’s engaged to be married but enjoys flirting online. He meets an alluring woman on Facebook and the two begin a virtual relationship, but the Internet romance begins seeping into the protag’s actual life in a deadly way.

Like Lionsgate’s 2005 thriller “Hard Candy,” “XOXO” explores misleading digital identities, and the studio plans to employ stylized visual sequences to make the online interactions more cinematic.

Popular on Variety

Nolfi is “The Bourne Ultimatum” and “Ocean’s Twelve” scribe who made his directorial debut last year with Universal’s Philip K. Dick adaptation “The Adjustment Bureau,” which he also wrote and produced. Helmer most recently signed on to rewrite and direct the Cuban Missile Crisis drama “One Minute to Midnight” for Fox 2000 and Davis Entertainment.

Nolfi is repped by WME and Ziffren Brittenham.

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