The Game

James Franco is in talks to star in MGM’s big screen adaptation of the bestselling book The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists by Neil Strauss. Franco would not be playing the Strauss character however, but instead the chatacter of Mystery, a master pick-up artist who teaches Neil the tricks of the trade and introduces him into the world of “the game.” Some of you might recall that the real life Mystery starred in a VH1 reality series spawned by the success of the book called “The Pick-Up Artist”.

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David Levien and Brian Koppleman made a name for themselves with the script for Rounders, then wrote (among other things) the scripts for Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean’s Thirteen and The Girlfriend Experience, and wrote and directed the Michael Douglas film Solitary Man. Now they are set to write and direct an adaptation of the Neil Strauss pick-up bible The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists. Read More »

“Are you just another AFC (‘average frustrated chump’) trying to meet an HB (‘hot babe’)? How would you like to ‘full-close’ with a Penthouse Pet of the Year? The answers, my friend, are in Neil Strauss’ entertaining book The Game.” So begins, the Amazon.com description of The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists by Neil Strauss. A day after it was announced that Robert Downey Jr. might star in another adaptation of a Strauss book, Emergency, news breaks that Lee Eisenberg and Gene Stupnitsky, writers on The Office, are polishing a screenplay of The Game. If Eisenberg and Stupnitsky’s names sound familiar, it’s because they wrote (or are writing, who knows) Ghostbusters 3. As previously announced, The Game will be directed by Ari Sandel. We’ve got more on the project after the jump. Read More »

Columbia Pictures have announced that they have optioned the rights to Neil Strauss‘s non-fiction book Emergency!: This Book Will Save Your Life. Strauss is probably best known for his bestselling pickup book The Game: Penetrating The Secret Society of Pickup Artists, which has also been in development for the past couple years (with Ari Sandel now working to bring it to the big screen, with Due Date scribe Adam Sztykiel is rewriting Dan Weiss‘ script). Robert Downey Jr is producing the project as a possible starring vehicle with Allan Loeb (Wall Street 2, Dilemma) writing the screenplay.

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The Game

In 2005, Columbia Pictures acquired the film rights to Neil Strauss‘ bestselling pickup book The Game: Penetrating The Secret Society of Pickup Artists, and About A Boy director/screenwriter Chris Weitz was at one point attached to direct. The option expired, and rights returned to Strauss. Now Variety is reporting that Academy Award-winning USC grad Ari Sandel (West Bank Story) is in talks to direct the big screen adaptation for Lionsgate with Spyglass financing and Depth of Field producing. Due Date scribe Adam Sztykiel is rewriting Dan Weiss‘ script.

For those of you who are chuckling about the idea of a handbook for pickup artists being adapted into a big screen movie, that isn’t exactly the case.

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