YA Author N.D. Wilson to Make Directorial Debut With 'The River Thief' (Exclusive)

Courtesy of Andy Patch
'The River Thief'

The indie film is led by 'Super 8' star Joel Courtney, newcomer Raleigh Cain and Johnny Cash’s brother, Tommy Cash.

Bestselling YA author N.D. Wilson is making his directorial debut with romantic action-drama The River Thief.

Based on an original screenplay by Wilson, the indie stars Joel Courtney (Super 8) as a reckless teenage drifter who takes his thieving act to a small river town. There he falls for a strong-willed waitress, played by newcomer Raleigh Cain (Longmire), and robs the right people and the wrong people -- and is pursued to the end by both.

The film also stars Johnny Cash’s brother, Tommy Cash, as well as Paul Johansson (Mad Men, One Tree Hill) and MMA Champion Bas Rutten (Here Comes the Boom).

River Thief, which was financed by Oxvision Films, is produced by Aaron Rench and executive produced by Brian Oxley and Kjell Christophersen.

Wilson says the project followed naturally from his previous work as an author. “I love novels, and I love writing fiction, but I have never experienced anything as invigorating as the creative stress involved in directing feature film," he says. "It's like an imaginative action sport -- danger, dread, risk, all taken on in pursuit of something beautiful, followed (hopefully) by the thrill of survival and success. I love the inspiration the pressure brings.”

Wilson has made a name for himself as a Middle Grade and YA author for Random House (100 Cupboards trilogy, Ashtown Burials series) and HarperCollins (the upcoming Outlaws of Time). He also directed The Hound of Heaven, a short film made collaboration with Kurosawa Productions. He is currently adapting a screenplay of C.S. Lewis The Great Divorce.