Deadline is reporting that Element Pictures, Anonymous Content, and Film4 have joined forces to acquire the rights to adapt Dean Kuipers book Burning Rainbow Farm, which is set to be directed by Academy Award-nominee Lenny Abrahamson.

The book is based on the true story of Rainbow, a marijuana-friendly farm in rural Michigan set up in the 1990’s by partners Tom Crosslin and Rollie Rohm. This utopia for the stoner community came to a tragic end when the pair were gunned down by the FBI, following a five-day standoff. Playwright Cory Finley will adapt the script.

Ed Guiney and Abrahamson will produce Burning Rainbow Farm for Element Pictures, alongside Adam Shulman for  Anonymous Content, and Alix Madigan for Mad Dog Films. Element’s Andrew Lowe, Anonymous Content’s Steve Golin, and Film4’s Daniel Battsek will executively produce.

I’ve always been fascinated by the tension in U.S. political discourse between various ideals of personal liberty and the perceived threats against them from the state. The intensely moving and tragic story of Tom and Rollie and the fate of Rainbow Farm, brilliantly captured and contextualised in Dean Kuiper’s excellent book, is a vivid and compelling way of dramatising a fundamental fracture which continues to define U.S. society today. I’m delighted to be working with such great producers as Alix and Adam, alongside my partner Ed Guiney and very excited to be collaborating with Cory Finley, who is an exceptional talent.
Lenny Abrahamson

This deal sees Element continue its strong relationship with Film4, having previously collaborated on Lenny Abrahamson’s Oscar-winning Room and The Lobster.

Following his Oscar nomination for Best Director, Abrahamson has his pick of next projects. He is currently attached to an adaptation of Laird Hunt’s Civil War novel Neverhome; an adaptation of Sarah Waters’ The Little Stranger with Frank star Domhnall Gleeson; an adaptation of Neal Bascomb’s upcoming book The Grand Escape, and a biography of boxer Emile Griffith, based on the book A Man’s World: The Double Life Of Emile Griffith. Irish audiences can next see Abrahamson’s work when NBCUniversal air the first season of his new TV series, Chance, from April.

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