• The Hollywood Reporter on LinkedIn
  • Follow THR on Pinterest

Columbia Options Rights to 'Emergency!' Book

Robert Downey Jr. developing project to be written by "Wall Street 2" scribe Allan Loeb.

After months of wrangling, Columbia has optioned the rights to "Emergency!: This Book Will Save Your Life," the non-fiction book from best-selling author Neil Strauss. Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps scribe Allan Loeb is set to pen the script.

Robert Downey Jr., Susan Downey, and Michael DeLuca are developing the project and will produce the feature adaptation, with Downey Jr. possibly starring.

Strauss is best known for writing the books "How to Make Love Like a Porn Star: A Cautionary Tale" with Jenna Jameson, and "The Dirt" with Motley Crue. Strauss wrote "Emergency!" with this ages disasters -- tsunamis, hurricanes, terrorist attacks, swine flu epidemics -- as the backdrop. He spent three years trekking through the U.S. and acquiring the tools to survive a major catastrophe.

According to the studio, Emergency! traces one man's journey as "he sets out to move his life offshore, and in the process, he learns to survive in the wild, and remake himself as a gun-toting, lock-picking, plane-flying, government-defying survivor. It's a tale of paranoid fantasies and crippling doubts, of shady lawyers and dangerous cult leaders, of billionaire gun nuts and survivalist superheroes, of weirdoes, heroes and ordinary citizens taking their families off the grid."

"The book is a study in male panic and since I specialized in that throughout the 90's I felt a true kinship with the material," said De Luca, who just produced The Social Network with Scott Rudin for the studio.

David Gambino will oversee the project for team Downey. Josh Bratman will develop the project along with De Luca and Tolmach, and Andrea Giannetti will oversee the title on behalf of Columbia Pictures.