Will Gluck to Direct SKYJACK: THE HUNT FOR D.B. COOPER for CBS Films

     June 13, 2012

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Will Gluck, director of comedies Fired Up!, Easy A and Friends with Benefits, will try his hand at action (comedy) in Skyjack: The Hunt for D.B. Cooper.  The film is an adaptation of the Geoffrey Gray novel of the same name which tells the tale of D.B. Cooper, who hijacked a Boeing 727 in mid-flight to demand $200,000 and four parachutes.  After jumping out of the plane somewhere over the Pacific Northwest, authorities were never able to catch him.  Gluck is in talks to direct and produce the adaptation while Keith Bunin (In Treatment) will write the script.  Hit the jump for more on Skyjack.

The book appears skyjack-will-gluckto be more of a “true crime” novel, with Gluck serving as an investigative reporter who dug through previously confidential FBI documents to uncover new clues.  He also traveled into the forty-year old memories of some interesting characters claiming to be Cooper, including a transgendered pilot.  Deadline reports that Skyjack would be an action-comedy that tells Cooper’s story by the point of view of three different men claiming to be him.  Gluck would produce through his Olive Bridge banner.

Gluck is currently in a deal with Sony Pictures for movies and series, but this project will take place outside of that arrangement.  Bunin is drafting a live-action biopic of Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel for Universal and Illumination Entertainment with Johnny Depp attached to star and produce.

Here’s the book description for Gray’s novel, Skyjack: The Hunt for D.B. Cooper (via Amazon):

“I have a bomb here and I would like you to sit by me.”

That was the note handed to a stewardess by a mild-mannered passenger on a Northwest Orient flight in 1971. It was the start of one of the most astonishing whodunits in the history of American true crime: how one man extorted $200,000 from an airline, then parachuted into the wilds of the Pacific Northwest and into oblivion. D. B. Cooper’s case has become the stuff of legend and obsessed and cursed his pursuers with everything from bankruptcy to suicidal despair. Now with Skyjack, journalist Geoffrey Gray delves into this unsolved mystery uncovering new leads in the infamous case.

Starting with a tip from a skyjack-book-coverprivate investigator into a promising suspect (a Cooper lookalike, Northwest employee, and trained paratrooper), Gray is propelled into the murky depths of a decades-old mystery, conducting new interviews and obtaining a first-ever look at Cooper’s FBI file. Beginning with a heartstopping and unprecedented recreation of the crime itself, from cabin to cockpit to tower, and uncanny portraits of characters who either chased Cooper or might have committed the crime, including Ralph Himmelsbach, the most dogged of FBI agents, who watched with horror as a criminal became a counter-culture folk hero who supposedly shafted the system…Karl Fleming, a respected reporter whose career was destroyed by a Cooper scoop that was a scam…and Barbara (nee Bobby) Dayton, a transgendered pilot who insisted she was Cooper herself.

With explosive new information and exclusive access to FBI files and forensic evidence, Skyjack reopens one of the great cold cases of the 20th century.

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