Author Kate Alice Marshall’s YA novel, Rules For Vanishing, was acquired on Tuesday by partnering companies Ascendant Entertainment and Picture Perfect Federation.
The move marks a reunion for Ascendant’s Rob Friedman and Picture Perfect’s Patrick Wachsberger. Both served as co-chairs for the Lionsgate Motion Picture Group where they shepherded blockbuster franchises like The Hunger Games and Divergent. Two also oversaw the Twilight franchise during their tenure at Summit Entertainment.
Ascendant exec Sam Speiser and Picture Perfect’s Sera Tabb brought the novel in whereupon Friedman and Wachsberger optioned the rights along with Ashley Stern.
The novel is described as a genre-bending thriller in which 17-year-old Sara and her friends receive a mysterious invitation into the woods to “play the game.” They are challenged to walk the vanishing road, the stuff of urban legends, unaware of the very real and horrific danger they will face. One thing is for certain: this road has a toll.
Viking Children published the novel for the U.S. in September with Walker Books for the UK. The former preceded in July publishing Marshall’s first novel, I Am Still Alive, which Lori Evans Taylor is developing with Universal and Pearl Street Films, with Ben Affleck will starring and producing.
“It is not only wonderful to be in business with my good friend and past partner Patrick, but the opportunity to collaborate on the development and production of inspired material such as this brings us both back to working directly with material and telling new stories to a global audience,” said Friedman.
“We are so happy to have found a YA novel that got us just as excited as the iconic material we pursued in the early days of our partnership. It’s a bonus to work with Rob again, and we can’t wait to move forward on this project together,” said Wachsberger.
Marshall is represented by ICM Partners and Lisa Rodgers of JABberwocky Literary Agency.