Richard Price returns to screenwriting

Richard Price’s gritty writing has been absent from the screen since 1996’s “Ransom”; the author was devoting himself to his new novel, “Freedomland.” But now that the book has been released to laudatory reviews (Entertainment Weekly gave it an “A,” calling it “engrossing, memorable… a psychically draining work”) Price, 49, will be heading back to the big screen. He’s adapting his novel for Paramount and producer Scott Rudin; Price will begin writing the script in July, after his book tour ends.

Rudin bought the rights to “Freedomland” before the book was finished, in what was a surprisingly pressure-free sale. As Price told EW Online, “The fear is that if you take the money before the book is written, you’ll have someone breathing down your neck saying, ‘Where’s the book? I hope your characters aren’t doing anything that’s going to be suicide in a movie.’ But Scott was great. Nobody said a damn thing to me. The check didn’t bounce, and I had enough money for the time I needed to write the book.”

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