The Weinsteins Buy Mad Ones

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Weinstein Books has announced that they have acquired Tom Folsom’s “The Mad Ones: Crazy Joe and the Revolution at the Edge of the Underworld,” a daring exploration of the notorious Gallo brothers and America in the 1960s. Weinstein Books President and CEO Rob Weisbach acquired North American rights to the book, which will be published in 2009, in a pre-empt, from Zoe Pagnamenta at PFD New York. The Weinstein Company has optioned the film and TV rights to develop and produce The Mad Ones. The joint announcement was made today by Harvey Weinstein, Co-Chairman of The Weinstein Company and Rob Weisbach.

The Mad Ones is the story of the notorious Gallo brothers—Joey, Kid Blast, and Larry—a trio of Brooklyn gangsters who lived out their wildest B-movie fantasies on the streets of 1960s New York City in an ill-fated coup against the Mafia, fueled by “Crazy Joe” Gallo’s forays into Greenwich Village counterculture. The Gallos are steeped in legend, from Bob Dylan’s song “Joey” to fictionalizations central to Mario Puzo’s “The Godfather” and Jimmy Breslin’s “The Gang That Couldn’t Shoot Straight.” The Mad Ones is an intriguing collision of a classic crime story and pop culture portrait of the turbulent sixties.

Renee Witt, Senior Vice President of Production and Development stated, “Tom Folsom has created a rich, humorous and intense portrait of the Brooklyn underworld and the 1960s counterculture that will attract leading filmmakers and engage movie lovers across the world. We look forward to developing this dynamic book for the big screen.”

Weisbach stated, “Tom Folsom’s wildly entertaining look at these two worlds offers the larger-than-life characters, page-turning human drama, and atmospheric period detail of all bestselling narrative nonfiction—it captivated us from the first page.”

Folsom added, “It’s exciting to join a creative team with the vision to take on the mob and the sixties counterculture revolution.”

Tom Folsom is a writer, director, and producer of television documentaries for A&E and Showtime, and the co-author of “Mr. Untouchable: The Rise, Fall and Resurrection of Heroin’s Teflon Don” written with its subject, drug-kingpin Nicky Barnes. He was formerly an editor at Rugged Land Books.

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