Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF) has acquired the hotly sought-after rights to the upcoming novel LUCKIEST GIRL ALIVE, it was announced today by Erik Feig, the Co-President of the Motion Picture Group. Pacific Standard’s Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea (“Gone Girl,” “Wild”) will produce the film, based on Jessica Knoll’s eagerly-anticipated debut novel which will be released May 12 (Simon & Schuster).
“Luckiest Girl Alive” centers on Ani FaNelli, a twenty-eight-year-old New Yorker who appears to have it all: a sought-after position at a women’s magazine, a wardrobe to kill for, and a dream wedding with her handsome fiancé on the horizon. But behind that veneer of perfection lies a vulnerability that Ani holds close and buries deep—a dark trauma from her past resurfaces only to give her a chance to confront her most shocking secret of all—but not without unraveling her meticulously crafted life.
The novel, set for release next month, is one of the summer’s most anticipated titles. Simon & Schuster’s Sarah Knight, who acquired and edited “Luckiest Girl Alive,” also acquired Gillian Flynn’s global best-seller “Gone Girl” and edited her best-seller “Dark Places” while at Random House.
“This is one of those rare books that come along every so often that you simply cannot put down,” said Feig. “We are thrilled to be working with Reese and Bruna on this project.”
“Luckiest Girl Alive is the kind of book that grabs you and doesn’t let go. The hero of the book is a wily, intelligent, complex narrator,” said Reese Witherspoon. “This character and the thrilling narrative that she drives are exactly the kind of story our company, Pacific Standard Films, wants to produce. We are thrilled to be collaborating with Jessica and Lionsgate to bring her debut novel to the screen.”
Jeyun Choi Munford, VP of Production, and Creative Exec Nirokhi Raychaudhuri will oversee the project on behalf of the studio.
Author Jessica Knoll has been a senior editor at Cosmopolitan, and the articles editor at SELF. She grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia and graduated from The Shipley School in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, and from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva, New York. She lives in New York City with her husband. This is her first novel.
The deal was negotiated by CAA on behalf of Knoll, the novel and the producers.