EXCLUSIVE: Amazon Studios has won a competitive auction and sealed a high-six figure outright purchase of The Dwelling, an unpublished short story by Aaron Jayh. Michael B. Jordan and Liz Raposo’s Outlier Society are attached to produce. Jordan is potentially starring.
Adapting the mind-bending story will be Aaron Guzikowski, the scribe best known for Denis Villeneuve’s Prisoners and Apple TV’s Raised by Wolves. Jordan and Raposo will produce with Ground Control’s Scott Glassgold.
Several studios bid and put together talent alignments, but it came down to Amazon and Netflix, sources said.
The Dwelling tells the story of a newly divorced father who discovers a house buried in his backyard. He is a former all pro football player trying to ease into retirement, and the hits he took on the field starts to make him unsure what is real and imagined, as things begin to go awry. The short story has a fantastic male lead at its center.
This comes at a great moment for Outlier, which is coming off the $250 million global success of Creed III heading into its fifth weekend. Outlier, which has a deal with Amazon, is lining up its next film.
An unsung part of this story is that it is the eighth sale of a short story for Glassgold’s Ground Control and Verve. Short stories, particularly in genre, are becoming a very viable way to broker deals and draw talent.
Two weeks ago, the duo sold I Am Not Alone to Netflix with Jessica Chastain to star and Misha Green to write and direct, with Glassgold producing alongside Simon Kinberg and Craig Flores. The month prior, they packaged The Occupant for New Line Cinema, with Barbarian’s Zach Cregger and Roy Lee producing alongside Glassgold. Other short story sales include My Wife & I Bought a Ranch and We Used to Live Here to Netflix, Caretaker to Universal with Sydney Sweeney to star, I Think My Mother-In-Law Is Trying to Kill Me to Sony 3000 and Wilderness Reform to Paramount.
Glassgold is currently in post-production on Sony Pictures’ HorrorScope and is readying Zeek Earl and Chris Caldwell’s follow-up to their Pedro Pascal starrer, Prospect.
Outlier is represented by WME, M88 and Johnson Shaprio Slewett & Kole;. Guzikowski is represented by Verve & Adam Kolbrenner at Lit Entertainment Group; Jayh and Ground Control are represented by Verve and Ashley Silver.