Sony Pictures, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg Make Movie Deal For ‘Lean In’

Lean In EXCLUSIVE: In a deal spearheaded by Sony Pictures production president Hannah Minghella, the studio has made a preemptive acquisition of film rights to Lean In: Women, Work, And The Will to Lead, the 2013 book written by Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg. The studio has set Nell Scovell, the veteran TV writer/director, to write the script. Scovell helped Sandberg write the book. The film is not a biography of Sandberg; rather, Scovell will hatch a narrative film from the themes contained within the book. Sandberg will donate her proceeds from the project to her foundation.

While there are some high-risers like Sandberg, the book covered the inequities between how women and men are treated in the workplace and in leadership positions. After analyzing the root causes, Sandberg offered theories and solutions on how women can shed these timeworn shackles and become better empowered in the workplace. It’s the second major movie project from Sony Pictures with a Facebook tie-in, after the studio made the Best Picture nominated David Fincher-directed The Social Network, about founder Mark Zuckerberg and the rocky formation of Facebook.

Nell ScovellScovell is currently directing an episode of the MTV series Awkward and she is developing a half-hour animated show with Bento Box. She has so far scripted and helmed two cable movies: It Was One of Us for Lifetime and Hayley Wagner, Star for Showtime, and her long list of TV series credits include NCIS, Monk, Murphy Brown, The Simpsons, and she created and was showrunner for ABC’s Sabrina, The Teenage Witch. She is repped by WME and Bloom Hergott.

Sony Pictures hasn’t set a producer for the project, but I have a feeling Minghella is going to hear the knocks on her office door shortly.

Comments (16)

  • Lifetime MOW.

    Comment by Joe — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 11:29am PST  
    • Lean In is a great book. Truly inspiring actually. But….. This is the worst idea for a movie in a long time. This acquisition has Amy Pascal written all over it and clearly her taste is no longer in sync with the marketplace.

      Comment by Lurker — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 6:01pm PST  
  • Oyy. This will never be a movie.

    Comment by Kate — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 11:46am PST  
  • Knock-Knock. Who’s there? Lean-In. Lean-In who? Lean-In for Best Picture that’s who.

    This is so ridiculous the book should be done as a documentary for TV to try and turn it into a dramatic feature or worse a dramedy is absurd.

    No you are wrong it’s perfect feature material you are just a male chauvinist pig who hates women that’s why you don’t want to develop this as a movie. You men are all alike you hate strong empowered women.

    Comment by George Costanza — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 11:52am PST  
  • Who are the fools trying to sell this as gold?

    Comment by JustSayin — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 12:08pm PST  
  • Loved the book! Go Nell!

    Comment by Lon Burke — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 12:09pm PST  
  • Natalie Portman would play a good Sheryl Sandberg.

    Comment by Denise — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 3:51pm PST  
    • Roseanne Barr would be better.

      Comment by Kim — Saturday January 25, 2014 @ 9:41am PST  
  • This just in: Lena Dunham to star in Lean In. You heard it here first.

    Judd Apatow will produce and direct. Judd more than any other male director understands women he knows what they want and what makes them succeed in life they have to marry an ambitious man then they are set for life.

    Remember girls, a woman’s place is in the home being the best housewife she can be. This has been another Tip for Girls from your 1950′s friend,

    Comment by Betty Cornell's Tips for Girls — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 4:14pm PST  
  • It was smart business to wait til FB was past its peak to buy this… Oh wait, no it wasn’t.

    Love how there is already a bifurcation present in Sony’s team. That took about ten minutes to occur.

    Comment by star jonestown — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 4:21pm PST  
  • New face book ok

    Comment by Nicole carroll — Friday January 24, 2014 @ 9:14pm PST  
  • Here we go again with the SAHM comments. Look, if some women prefer to raise their own children, rather than farming them out to the daycare industry in order to climb an increasingly shaky corporate ladder, what the hell is wrong with that personal choice? Absolutely nothing.

    Comment by DW — Saturday January 25, 2014 @ 8:42am PST  
    • Why do you hate women?

      Comment by amirite — Saturday January 25, 2014 @ 2:15pm PST  
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