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Hollywood's 25 Most Powerful Authors

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    Items 11-20
    Daniel H. Wilson Headshot - P 2012
    15. Daniel H. Wilson
    Known For: "Robopocalypse" (film not yet released). Big Number: Two of his novels were optioned before the book rights were sold.

    “The cool big idea” — that’s how Robopocalypse author Wilson sums up his Hollywood appeal. The 34-year-old computer scientist-turned-hit writer’s two most recent novels — Robopocalypse and Amped — were scooped up before he had finished writing them. Says Wilson, “DreamWorks bought Robopocalypse, I sold the book the next day, and at the end of the week I was in a room with Spielberg and [screenwriter] Drew Goddard talking robots.” The movie is on schedule for a 2014 release with Chris Hemsworth in the lead. Amped initially was picked up by Summit and now is in development at Working Title.

    The Portland, Ore., resident, who lives with his child-psychologist wife and toddler daughter, divides his time between novels in the morning (the Robopocalypse sequel Robogenesis is out in 2014) and scripts in the evening (he just finished a remake of the 1987 cult film Cherry 2000). No matter how far out his writing gets, Wilson emphasizes the importance of his Carnegie Mellon Ph.D. in robotics: “I know a lot about something that used to be science fiction but is now fact.”

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