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SI's story on Murray going to film


From print, to web and now the big screen.

Time Inc., the parent company of Sports Illustrated and, announced Tuesday that it has established a development fund that will turn its top editorial content into films.

In partnership with Beverly Hills-based management and production company The Collective, and XYZ Films, a production company that finances rights acquisitions and script development, the initiative will allow SI to put some of its greatest stories into motion pictures and documentaries.

The fund's first project will be Breaking the Bank.

In its April 14 issue, Sports Illustrated published a story by L. Jon Wertheim under that heading about former UFC and Cage Rage fighter Lee "Lightning" Murray, who masterminded the largest cash heist in history -- a $92-million raiding of the UK-based Securitas AB, in 2006.

"Time Inc. has been a significant and prolific storyteller over the past 80 years. There have been numerous films based on stories that first appeared in the pages of our magazines," said Paul Speaker, President of Time Inc. Studios, the production arm of Time Inc. "Now we're putting a structure in place where our brands will enjoy greater control over their content, generate additional revenue streams and expand the brand onto other platforms."

Other project based on the work of Time Inc. writers include Dog Day Afternoon (from Life) and Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room. (Fortune).

James Cameron, who directed Titantic, is set to direct The Dive, based on Gary Smith's article about free-divers, "The Rapture of the Deep," in SI's June 16, 2003 issue.

Time Inc.'s story archives date to 1923 with the first issue of TIME magazine. It also owns a photo archive with over 12 million images. SI's archive alone, which is now available for free via SI Vault, holds 150,000 stories and 500,000 photographs dating to its debut issue in 1954.