Mike Fleming

Gale Anne Hurd’s Valhalla Entertainment and Australian-based film company Arenamedia will produce The Shipkiller, an adaptation of the Justin Scott epic revenge thriller novel. Australian filmmaker Robert Connolly (Balibo) is attached to direct and Hurd will produce for Valhalla with Connolly producing via Arenamedia. Henry Morrison and Andrew Myer are executive producing.

The highly regarded high seas novel is described as “an odyssey of revenge that embraces the distant waters of the world, from the titanic storms of the South Atlantic to the oil-slicked reaches of the Persian Gulf.” One man is determined to win at sea the justice he has been denied on land.

“This is an extraordinary novel that was almost made in 1979 with Sean Connery and David Niven, and I am ecstatic to be working with the remarkably talented Gale Anne Hurd to finally bring this brilliant novel and tale to life,” said Connolly. “Ever since seeing Phillip Noyce’s terrific Dead Calm, I had wanted to find the perfect thriller at sea and this is surely it.”

“I’m absolutely thrilled to be producing this film with one of Australia’s most talented directors, Robert Connolly,” said Hurd. “He has demonstrated his incredible dramatic range with such compelling films as Balibo and now with Underground. I’m confident Robert will make a truly powerful film from Justin Scott’s remarkable novel.”

Connolly is here with Underground which is set in 1980′s Melbourne and focuses on the formative teen years of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (played by newcomer Alex Williams). Written and directed by Connolly, the film also stars Anthony LaPaglia, Rachel Griffiths and Laura Wheelwright. The acquisition title premiered here over the weekend. Connolly is represented by Jennifer Levine at Untitled.

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