Recent UCLA film school graduate Tim Schechmeister has spent the last few months on the festival circuit with Viral, the horror short film he wrote with his brother Matt. Schechmeister met Stephen Susco (writer of The Grudge and its sequel) at a screenwriting event in the summer, and handed him a business card with a link to the short. Susco was impressed, and showed it to his Grudge producer Roy Lee. Lee brought fellow producer Lawrence Grey in to pitch it to Screen Gems, who has now picked up the rights to adapt the short into a feature-length movie. The system works! The Schechmeister brothers will write the film, with Tim set to direct again. Susco, Lee, and Grey will produce alongside John Middleton.
Viral is an 11-minute tale about a cyberbully that incorporates supernatural elements. Hit the jump more info on the short, plus a trailer.
Last November we heard Pirates of the Caribbean franchise director Gore Verbsinski and screenwriter Terry Rossio were teaming up for a magic based police procedural called Magical Law. Now Deadline has word that Verbinski is also working with The Grudge writer Stephen Susco on The Brink, a supernatural crime drama being developed by the Starz cable network. Based on J.C. Hutchins’ book Personal Effects: Dark Art, the series follows art therapist Zach Taylor’s investigation into the life and madness of Martin Grace, an accused serial killer who claims to have foreseen, but not caused, his victims’ deaths.
Apparently the series will have an interactive element with online components branching off from the show that is described as “equal parts House, CSI, and The X-Files.” Sounds like it could be pretty cool, but I haven’t subscribed to Starz in years, so I may have to wait for the eventual DVD release. Anyone interested?