Summit options 'Arena'

First-time feature scribes penned the sci-fi action spec

Summit Entertainment has optioned the rights to "Arena," a sci-fi action spec penned by first-time feature writers Toby Wagstaff and Darren Howell. Benderspink will produce along with the writers' manager Jim Thompson.

The story revolves around a group of modern-day soldiers mysteriously transported from the thick of battle to a terrain-shifting landscape where they must fight the best warriors from different eras and histories in a gladiatorial fight to the death or be killed by the all-powerful operators of the "Arena."

Summit president of production Erik Feig and senior vp production Geoff Shaevitz will oversee.

At Summit, Benderspink is producing the comedy "Sensei." It also has "Torrente" at New Line and "Fiasco Heights" at Universal.

Thompson and Wagstaff worked on the hip-hop documentary "Diamonds in the Rough," on which Thompson acted as a producer and Wagstaff a writer. Thompson also was a producer on the Jet Li-Jason Statham starrer "War."