AFM: Covert Media Boards Film Based on Teen Thriller ‘Need’

Covert Media has come on board to fully finance and produce a movie based on Joelle Charbonneau’s teen thriller “Need.”

Covert will handle worldwide sales on the feature film adaptation at the American Film Market, which opened Wednesday.

Paul Hanson, CEO of Covert Media, made the announcement. Covert’s Elissa Friedman, Media Content Capital’s Sasha Shapiro and Anton Lessine are executive producing the project.

The filmmaking team of Samantha Buck and Marie Schlingmann will write and direct the film adaptation. The duo’s credits include the documentary “Best Kept Secret,” which won a Peabody Award and was nominated for a Golden Globe, along with their shorts “Canary,” which played at the Palm Springs ShortFest, and “The Mink Catcher,” which played at Telluride & SXSW.

“Need” revolves around a new social networking site offering high school students the chance to get anything they desire in exchange for a price. A female student seeks a kidney for her younger brother learns that there is a high price to be paid — and as her peers’ demands escalate, so does the body count.

“Need” was awarded the 2016 Anthony Award for Best Young Adult Novel. Variety reported last year that the movie project was in development with Bill Block’s Merced Media.

“‘Need’ is a fan favorite YA novel that we know will make for an exciting and chilling look at the world of social media,” Hanson said. “With the fresh perspective of the creative team we have in Samantha and Marie and the twists and turns of Joelle’s novel, this is a film that already has us on the edge of our seats.  It’s a dynamic and frightening story of our times.”

Charbonneau is the author of the New York Times Best-Selling trilogy “The Testing,” the Rebecca Robbins mysteries and the Glee Club mysteries. Paramount Pictures optioned “The Testing” following its publication.

Buck & Schlingmann are represented by Lee Stobby of Lee Stobby Entertainment and lawyer Stephen Clark of Lichter, Grossman, Nichols, Adler & Feldman. The deal was negotiated on Covert’s behalf by Chet Devaskar.

Covert’s own production slate includes “Ophelia,” starring Naomi Watts and Daisy Ridley; “Forty-Six,” directed by Alik Sakharov; and “Resurface” alongside Broken Road Productions.

More Film

  • Bradley Cooper A Star Is Born

    The Message of the Oscar Nominations: You'd Better Have a Social Message

    Each year at the Left Coast crack of dawn, when the Oscar nominations are announced, there’s generally at least one major nomination many pundits were predicting that fails to materialize. When that happens, entertainment media tends to rise up as one and say the s-word: snub. In truth, it’s not usually a snub; it’s just [...]

  • Elton John and Mark Ronson

    Elton John to 'Shallow' Songwriter Mark Ronson: 'You're Going to Win the Oscar'

    Elton John is willing to bet that Mark Ronson will win the Oscar for Best Original Song for “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born.” The nominations were announced this morning. The legendary performer spoke to Ronson on the latest episode of his radio show “Elton John’s Rocket Hour” on Apple Music’s Beats 1.  “You’re having a [...]

  • Olivia Colman Colin Firth Helen Mirren

    Playing a British Monarch Is a Step on the Road to Oscar Glory - Again

    “Uneasy lies the head that wears a crown,” Shakespeare wrote of Britain’s care-burdened monarchs. Try telling that to the Academy. Once again, playing British royalty has proved to be a tried-and-true route to Oscar glory, with Olivia Colman as the latest actor to be nominated for an Academy Award for portraying an occupant of the British [...]

  • Black Panther Movie

    Oscars: 'Black Panther' Leads Best Picture Nominees to Near-Record Box Office Grosses

    This year’s Academy Award nominees proved the Oscars don’t need a popular film category to recognize movies with huge box office grosses. The 2019 crop of best picture hopefuls have generated an impressive $1.26 billion so far in North America alone. That bounty is led by “Black Panther,” which earned a sensational $700 million at [...]

  • oscar nominations 2019 stream online

    How to Watch This Year’s Oscar-Nominated Films

    The 2019 Oscar nominations have been announced, and if you want to catch up on the nominees, we’ve rounded up some easy ways to watch or stream the original films, documentaries, and songs competing for an award. Period comedy “The Favourite” and Alfonso Cuaron’s “Roma” lead the pack with 10 nominations apiece, while “Green Book” [...]

  • Pawel Pawlikowski "Cold War"

    Pawel Pawlikowski's 'Cold War' Makes History for Poland

    Alfonso Cuaron might’ve tied an Oscar record with four nods to his name for “Roma,” which scored 10 nominations overall. But another black-and-white film in a foreign language, Pawel Pawlikowski’s jazz-infused romantic drama “Cold War,” was honored with three Academy Award nominations Tuesday, the most in history for a primarily Polish-backed production. The film will [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content