EXCLUSIVE: After suing Paramount Pictures to recapture rights to his Harry Bosch crime novels The Black Ice and The Black Echo, Michael Connelly is in talks to make a new film alliance with Yellow Bird Films, the Swedish production company run by Soren Staermose and Ole Sondberg that generated the Stieg Larsson crime novel trilogy adaptations that started with The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. They are also producing with Scott Rudin the Larsson adaptation for Sony Pictures that David Fincher is directing with Daniel Craig and Rooney Mara starring.
In order to get those books out of Paramount, the deal comes with a provision they pay the studio $3 million for sitting on the franchise for close to two decades. Connelly is paying that money himself, illustrating that while crime doesn’t pay, writing about it sure does. The move comes just as another of his bestsellers, The Lincoln Lawyer, was released in film form with Matthew McConaughey starring. I’m told the deal being worked out for the Bosch series will make Connelly a partner in the film venture. This is his signature book series, revolving around Bosch, an LAPD homicide detective who has been the centerpiece of 16 novels that have sold millions of copies. The two books were optioned in 1992 and Connelly sued last year because when he attempted to recover rights to the stalled film project, he felt that Paramount loaded an unreasonable amount of development costs … Read More »
Stories about rights-holders fall into two categories: either they’re the bully or the victim. Until recently, crime novelist Michael Connelly fell into the latter category. Michael Connelly finally has back his Hieronymous “Harry” Bosch character which appears in 15 of his 22 books. Harry Bosch is a brooding Los Angeles Police Department detective named, appropriately, after an early Dutch painter known for his eccentric visions of hell. And since 1995, Bosch has been in Hollywood development hell.
Freelance journalist Diane Haithman files this report for Deadline: Until very recently, Connelly, a one-time LA Times police reporter, had been locked in a years-long battle with Paramount over Harry Bosch. Connelly’s first two Harry Bosch books, Black Ice (1992) and The Black Echo (1993) were optioned by Paramount back in 1995. But Paramount never developed either book into a film, to Connelly’s big disappointment. Worse, Connelly had given Paramount ownership of the Harry Bosch character, so the other 13 books couldn’t be made into movies, either. In January of this year, the 15-year option finally expired and Connelly had a one-year window to buy back the rights – as long as he also paid Paramount back for “all out-of-pocket costs, advances and payments” incurred by the studio, plus interest.
But how much was that amount, exactly? In March, Connelly quietly sued the studio to seek what he felt was an accurate accounting of how much Paramount had spent on development in order to come up with an appropriate buy-back price before his window … Read More »