McTiernan places bet on 'Stakes'


John McTiernan is set to direct the Las Vegas action thriller "High Stakes" for Persistent Entertainment and Velvet Octopus.

Penned by Ronnie Christensen, the story revolves around two friends who find themselves in over their heads when they realize they are the living collateral of a high-stakes bet.

Matt Rhodes, Judd Payne and Keri Selig are producing the project, which is scheduled to begin shooting in the fall in Shreveport, La., and Las Vegas.

ICM's international and independent film division packaged the project and will handle North American rights.

"Stakes" marks the second collaboration between Christensen and Persistent. The first is Sony's upcoming thriller "Passengers," starring Patrick Wilson and Anne Hathaway.

McTiernan, whose credits include "Die Hard," "Die Hard: With a Vengeance" and "The Thomas Crown Affair," most recently directed the John Travolta-Samuel L. Jackson starrer "Basic."

He is repped by ICM, manager Ron Mardigian and attorney David Nochimson.

Christensen is repped by ICM, manager Selig and attorney Neil Meyer.