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Martin Scorsese Developing Byron Janis Biopic at Paramount (EXCLUSIVE)

Paramount is developing a biopic based on the life of classical pianist Byron Janis with Martin Scorsese producing, Variety has learned exclusively.

The studio has bought a pitch from Peter Glanz, who is writing the script. The project is based on Janis’ book “Chopin and Beyond: My Extraordinary Life in Music and the Paranormal.”

Janis has been widely honored for his extensive repertoire, which includes Beethoven, Mozart, Rachmaninoff and Prokofiev, with a special affinity for the music of 19th century composer Frederic Chopin. He discovered two previously unknown Chopin manuscripts in 1967.

He was student of Vladimir Horowitz and was selected in 1960 by the U.S. to perform in the Soviet Union, representing the start of a successful cultural  exchange between the Cold War adversaries.

Scorsese has been working on the historical drama “Silence” with Liam Neeson, Andrew Garfield and Adam Driver starring. The film, based on the novel of the same name by Shusaku Endo, follows 17th century Portuguese Jesuits persecuted during their mission to Japan.

Paramount released Scorsese’s three most recent films: “The Wolf of Wall Street,”  “Hugo” and “Shutter Island.” It has not set a release date for “Silence.”

Glanz set up the project “Race to the South Pole,” based on the attempts by Robert Falcon Scott and Roald Amundsen to arrive first at the South Pole, at the Ben Affleck-Matt Damon production banner Pearl Street. He made his directorial debut on the comedy “The Longest Week,” starring Jason Bateman and Olivia Wilde.

Glanz is repped by ICM Partners and Mosaic. His attorney is Adam Kaller at the Hansen Jacobson firm.

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