“Amanda Knox” producer Stephen Robert Morse is launching development of projects based on the book “Sons of Wichita: How the Koch Brothers Became America’s Most Powerful and Private Dynasty.”
Morse has teamed with veteran producer Max Peltz to option the rights to create both fiction and non-fiction projects based on Daniel Schulman’s 2014 book about David and Charles Koch, the owners of Koch Industries. Morse is producing through Observatory LLC and Peltz through Cavendish Pictures Ltd.
David Koch died on Aug. 23 at the age of 79. The Koch brothers have used their massive fortune to further their political interests, and are often credited with giving rise to the Tea Party movement and helping land Donald Trump the presidency.
Morse said, “This is the most definitive story of a true American dynasty, and with so many potent political issues at the forefront, it is as relevant today as ever before.”
Divergent Pictures’ Chris Matson and Russell Smith, along with their law firm SmithDehn LLP, are backing Morse and Peltz. They have represented Oscar-winning documentary “Citizenfour,” as well as “Knock Down the House” and “Who Is America?”
Morse and Peltz are finishing a documentary alongside RadicalMedia titled “Southern Gothic,” about the 1983 murder of Timothy Coggins in Georgia. They are also working on a yet-to-be announced sports documentary for a major network.
Morse was nominated for a 2017 Primetime Emmy Award for producing “Amanda Knox.” He directed, produced and wrote “Eurotrump,” centered on Geert Wilders, the Dutch right wing politician who lives behind 24/7 security protection due to threats on his life from ISIS. He also executive produced “Freedom for the Wolf,” winner of the 2018 Audience Award at the Slamdance Film Festival.
Peltz was an associate producer on “Somewhere in the Middle,” and oversaw the production of “Decadence and Downfall: The Shah of Iran’s Ultimate Party” and “Unknown Male Number 1.” In 2016, he helped to launch the documentary streaming platform Docsville.
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