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Chilean miners sell story to 'Black Swan' producer

July 25, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
The story of the 33 Chilean miners who were trapped underground for more than two months is on its way to the big screen.

The miners sold the rights to their story to producer Mike Medavoy. The film will recount the plight of the men after the San Jose mine they were working in collapsed near Copiapo, Chile.

Medavoy has produced films like "Shutter Island" and "Black Swan." "Motorcycle Diaries" screenwriter Jose Rivera is set to write the script.

Plan B Entertainment, a company owned by actor Brad Pitt, had reportedly competed for the film rights to the story. An attorney for the miners said Pitt's company made a multi-million dollar offer.

The miners were hoisted to freedom Oct. 13, 2010, after being trapped for 69 days.

Medavoy, who established Phoenix Pictures after years as a top executive at TriStar Pictures, Orion Pictures and elsewhere, acknowledged that he was initially apprehensive about taking on the film because of the well-known ending. But he said the miners' story reminded him of John Ford's "How Green Was My Valley," the 1941 film about life in a Welsh mining town.

"I think of it as all of our lives, just coincidence and chance," Medavoy said. "There's so much drama, and when the drama kicks in, it's really fascinating. And all the drama that plays out above ground can be interspersed."

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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