EXCLUSIVE: Napoleon Dynamite producer Jeremy Coon has optioned Raiders!, the Alan Eisenstock book that tells how two Mississippi kids set out to remake Raiders Of The Lost Ark. The pals started at 11 and finished when they turned 18, and in that time managed to re-stage every scene, shot and stunt in their backyards and basements. They first shot on Betamax and then on VHS when the former became obsolete. The kid filmmakers, Chris Strompolos and Eric Zala, met in elementary school and are now in their early 40s. They will produce with Coon two projects and their life rights are part of the package. First, Coon intends to direct a documentary as he works to set up a narrative feature, which is essentially a movie about the making of a movie that is a remake of another movie.
When Coon first saw Raiders Of The Lost Ark: The Adaptation at a film festival, it was during a period when all of the optimism and wide-eyed wonder that went into making the gem Napoleon Dynamite had been replaced by depression and cynicism. Coon and his cohorts were forced to sue Fox after feeling shortchanged by the proceeds of their $400,000 budget film that grossed nearly $50 million worldwide and made a lot more than that on video and ancillaries. The suit is still going on. READ MORE »