TORONTO — Canuck film producer David Cormican (“Stranded”) has nabbed screen rights to Kim Izzo’s debut fiction novel “The Jane Austen Marriage Manual,” published last spring by MacMillan/St. Martin’s Press in the U.S.
The deal was negotiated by Cormican and Leslie Conliffe of The Intellectual Property Group on behalf of the author.
Izzo’s comic romance follows Austen fan and beauty editor Kate Shaw — single, on the verge of 40 and newly jobless — who embarks on a freelance assignment to explore the reality of marrying for money over love in the modern age.
“It’s Bridget Jones meets ‘Sex and the City,’ very approachable chick-lit for guys, and from a Canadian perspective lends itself well to international co-production because of the different countries and characters,” Cormican told Variety.
“The work of Jane Austen is timeless and given that this year is the 200th anniversary of ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ the timing couldn’t be better,” said Izzo, currently deputy editor of Canuck lifestyle mag “Zoomer.” She previously wrote non-fiction books “The Fabulous Girl’s Guide to Decorum” and its sequel, culled from the advice column she co-wrote with Ceri Marsh in the 1990s.
“Marriage Manual” is the first acquisition under Cormican’s Up Up and Away shingle, hatched shortly after his amicable departure in January from Regina-based Minds Eye Entertainment where he was VP of development and production (“Tall Man,” “Faces in the Crowd”).
Tonya Lee Williams (“The Young and the Restless”) will co-produce “Marriage Manual” and Up Up and Away will develop and co-produce with Don Carmody Prods.
Cormican and Carmody (“The Mortal Instruments”) were producers on Katharine Isabelle-starring zombie chiller “13 Eerie,” which eOne opens in Toronto April 26.
Earlier this month the pair launched Don Carmody Television to produce high-end event TV shows. Carmody’s last smallscreen foray was 1996 TV movie “The Late Shift.”
“Now is a great time to be developing domestic-driven programming and exploring foreign service partnerships to capitalize on production arrangements in Canada,” Carmody said.
“Working with David allows me to do just that while keeping the feature side at full tilt. The time is right to take advantage of the opportunities that are presently available in the global market.”