According to this morning's Hollywood Reporter, Shannon Burke's debut novel Black Flies (or Safelight, as Amazon prefers to call it) will be brought to the screen by Paramount Pictures. Building on his own experiences as an EMT in Harlem, Burke's novel focuses on a troubled paramedic named Frank Verbeckas, and how he balances the death of his father, an ill-advised romance with an HIV-positive fencer (Publisher's Weekly describes the romance as "a minimalist, edgy Love Story") and life in the "free-fire zone of early-1990s Harlem." Boy, that sounds uplifting.

The screenplay will be written by Todd Kessler, a television writer and producer whose resume -- featuring both The Sopranos and Robbery Homicide Division, as well as an Emmy nomination -- suggests he may be well-qualified for the apparent darkness in the story. When Kessler finishes the script, he'll hand it off to another man who has proved himself adept at handling the harrowing: Darren Aronofsky is set to both direct and produce. It's unclear, however, where Black Flies fits into Aronofsky's schedule, and if it will be made before either Flicker and Lone Wolf and Cub ahead of him.
categories Movies, Cinematical