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STX Entertainment has acquired film rights to David Jaher’s book The Witch of Lime Street, which centers on Harry Houdini’s rivalry with spirit medium Margery Crandon.
Mama helmer Andres Muschietti will direct the film and co-produce with Barbara Muschietti. Jaher will adapt his own work.
The book, set in the 1920s, centers on Harry Houdini and a panel of investigative experts who attempt to debunk Crandon, a psychic and spirit medium known as The Witch of Lime Street. Houdini made it his personal mission to debunk fake spiritualists as frauds and charlatans by revealing their tricks.
“Quite a few producers and studios were pursuing rights to this book for very good reason,” STX president and chief content officer Oren Aviv said in a statement. “This is a spellbinding and exciting true story that weaves a fantastic mystery and lots of intrigue with history involving some of the most renowned and iconic figures of the era. The timeless question ‘is there life after death?’ is explored through a scientific quest to investigate and validate supernatural phenomena. Ultimately, the film leads to an epic showdown and otherworldly confrontation as the world-renowned occult master Harry Houdini takes on the world’s greatest psychic, Margery Crandon.”
STX vp production Sheroum Kim will oversee development of the project on behalf of the studio.
Muschietti directed Jessica Chastain-starrer Mama, and also is attached to helm It. He is repped by WME.
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