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‘No Escape’s’ John Erick Dowdle to Direct Panama Thriller ‘Six Minutes to Freedom’

No Escape” director John Erick Dowdle is on board to direct action thriller “Six Minutes to Freedom,” based on the 1989 rescue of American Kurt Muse in Panama.

Dowdle is writing the script with brother Drew Dowdle from the John Gilstrap book of the same name. Producers are MadRiver Pictures topper Marc Butan, Drew Dowdle, Sam Franco and Laura Bickford with Ed Fee executive producing.

Muse had been imprisoned for broadcasting from a pirate radio station that dissented against Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega. He was the first American rescued from prison by the U.S. Delta Force.

The Dowdle brothers wrote, directed and produced “No Escape,” starring Owen Wilson, Lake Bell and Pierce Brosnan. The siblings’ other credits include “As Above, So Below” for Legendary Pictures and Universal, “Devil” for Universal and “Quarantine” for Screen Gems.

MadRiver Pictures launched in May. It’s financing and producing Harmony Korine’s “The Trap,” which stars Idris Elba, Benicio Del Toro, James Franco and Al Pacino, and Mark Romanek’s “Norco”; its slate includes “Triple 9,” “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” and “The Lost City of Z.”

The brothers are repped by WME.

(Pictured: Drew Dowdle and John Erick Dowdle)

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