CATEGORIES Drama, Independent, Romance, Casting, Deals, Lionsgate Films, Newsstand, Cinematical Indie, Movie News, CinematicalTwo friends of mine read Dan Millman's The Way of the Peaceful Warrior last year, and I could NOT get them to shut up about it. Something about a gymnast, and a man who taught him to live the right way, or something. When they told me about, it was clear that the book was heavy on philosophy - there was a lot of "You know...it's, like, about life. But way more than that!" in their descriptions, which didn't make it sound like a book that would lend itself to a screenplay. Little did I know, however, that it did so a long damn time ago - and that the movie has, in fact, already been made.
Over the years, the movie rights changed hands many times (they started with Mark Amin at Trimark) as small production houses broke up or were swallowed up, and as executives moved. In the middle of all the shuffling around, a deal was struck with Blockbuster (through DEJ Productions) to finance and distribute the film; that deal, in turn, got it greenlit. In post-production now, the movie - entitled Peaceful Warrior - was directed by Victor Salva (best known for Jeepers Creepers, oddly enough) and stars Scott Mechlowicz as Millman (the book is a "blend" of fact and fiction, with a central character who shares a name with its author) and Nick Nolte as Socrates, his mysterious teacher. When Blockbuster offloaded DEJ, they kept the distribution rights to Peaceful Warrior, which were just purchased by Lionsgate; the film will be in theaters in early June.