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Fassbender will play the role of superspy Malko Linge, with Oscar-nominated screenwriter Eric Warren Singer (American Hustle) set to pen the screenplay.
Lionsgate has also secured the rights to de Villiers’ catalog of espionage thrillers, serialized through 200 books that have sold throughout the world. The S.A.S. franchise follows the singular hero Malko Linge, an Austrian nobleman and freelance CIA operative who spent his formative years in a special Nazi work camp for captured spies and learned the intricate dark arts of tradecraft from the best. Now an adult living in a reclaimed family manor fallen into disrepair, Malko becomes a spy-for-hire.
The first film set will be mainly based on de Villiers’ book Checkpoint Charlie.
“We are enormously excited to be teaming with Greg Shapiro and Michael Fassbender, as well as Lars Sylvest from Black Magic and Thorsten Schumacher from Rocket Science, to develop Malko,” Lionsgate Motion Picture Group chairman Joe Drake said Tuesday in a statement.
In addition to Fassbender, who is producing through his DMC Film banner, the pic’s producers include Black Magic’s Sylvest, Kingsgate Films’ Greg Shapiro and Rocket Science’s Schumacher. Serving as executive producers are Singer, Jason Clark and DMC’s Conor McCaughan.
CAA Media Finance brokered the deal for the Malko adaptation, with Dan Freedman overseeing negotiations for Lionsgate.
Fassbender and Singer are repped by CAA.
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