CBS Films has acquired the U.S. distribution rights to Winchester from Bullitt Entertainment and Diamond Pictures. The film is being directed by Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig (Predestination) who wrote the screenplay for Winchester with Tom Vaughan. Academy Award-winner Helen Mirren (The Queen) will star, with Imagination Design Works’ Brett Tomberlin and Blacklab Entertainment’s Tim McGahan producing.
The film follows the story of firearm heiress Sarah Winchester (Mirren), who was convinced that she was haunted by the souls killed at the hands of the Winchester repeating rifle. After the sudden deaths of her husband and child, she threw herself into the 24-hour a day, seven days a week construction of an enormous mansion designed to keep the evil spirits at bay. But when skeptical San Francisco psychiatrist Eric Price is dispatched to the estate to evaluate her state of mind, he discovers that her obsession may not be so insane after all. Winchester will take audiences inside the labyrinth like house that is believed to be one of the most haunted places in the world.
“We were immediately obsessed with the Spierig brothers intelligent and twisted take on a great American legend and could not be more excited to be working with the Spierig brothers and Dame Helen Mirren to bring this film to audiences,” said CBS Films executive vice president of acquisitions and co-productions Scott Shooman.
Added the Spierigs: “We were impressed by CBS Films' experience with the genre and their passion for and understanding of the material and know that they are the perfect U.S. Distribution partner for this film.”
Winchester is being financed by Bullitt Entertainment, Diamond Pictures and Blacklab Entertainment, with Diamond Pictures handling international sales. Bullitt’s Benedict Carver, Diamond’s Daniel Diamond and Tobin Armbrust are executive producing. Andy Trapani, Toni Lianos, Brian Gilbert, Marc Shipper and Simon Oakes also will serve as executive producers.
Production will begin in March 2017 on location in San Jose and in Australia. CBS Films’ latest release, the acclaimed action thriller Hell Or High Water, opens in limited release this Friday.
Benedict Carver, Daniel Diamond and WME brokered the deal with CBS Films.