EXCLUSIVE: Sharp Objects creator Marti Noxon and EP Jessica Rhoades have optioned the film and TV rights to Abdi Nazemian’s YA novel Like a Love Story.   

Noxon and Rhoades will develop the Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins novel into a feature film, with each serving as producer on the project. Author-writer-producer Nazemian is on board to write and will adapt his novel for the big screen. Rhoades and Nazemian worked together on NBC’s The Village.

Like a Love Story follows three teens living in New York City in 1989. There’s Reza, an Iranian boy who has just moved to the city with his mother to live with his stepfather and stepbrother. He’s terrified that someone will guess the truth he can barely acknowledge about himself. Reza knows he’s gay, but all he knows of gay life are the media’s images of men dying of AIDS. There’s Judy, an aspiring fashion designer who worships her uncle Stephen, a gay man with AIDS who devotes his time to activism as a member of ACT UP. Judy has never imagined finding romance…until she falls for Reza, and they start dating. And then there’s Art, Judy’s best friend and their school’s only out and proud teen. As Reza and Art grow closer, Reza struggles to find a way out of his deception that won’t break Judy’s heart—and destroy the most meaningful friendship he’s ever known. Reflecting on the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, Nazemian’s novel explores what it means to be your truest self while facing a world full of ignorance, fear, love, and hope.

“Abdi Nazemian has written a sweet, funny and compelling novel with characters that jump off the page. It’s a wonderful romance that’s also a call to activism, which is no small feat. We’re thrilled to work with the extraordinary Abdi and help bring this captivating story to the screen,” said Noxon and Rhoades.

Noxon will produce through her Tiny Pyro production label with Maria Grasso overseeing for the company. Rhoades will produce through her Pacesetter Productions with Raghav Tandon overseeing for the company.

Nazemian is the author of The Authentics. His novel, The Walk-In Closet, won the Lambda Literary Award for LGBT Debut Fiction. His screenwriting credits include the films The Artist’s WifeThe Quiet, and Menendez: Blood Brothers, and the NBC television series The Village. He has been an executive producer and associate producer on numerous films, including Call Me By Your Name, Little Woods, The House of Tomorrow and Scotty and the Secret History of Hollywood.

Nazemian is represented by Holly Frederick at Curtis Brown and his screenwriting agents are Brant Rose and Toochis Rose at Brant Rose Agency.

Noxon is represented by Hansen Jacobson. Rhoades is represented by WME Entertainment and Adam Cooper at Jackoway Austen Tyerman Wertheimer Mandelbaum Morris Bernstein Trattner & Klein.

HBO’s Sharp Objects was nominated for three Golden Globes including TV Limited Series, Best Actress Limited Series (Amy Adams) and Supporting Actress Limited Series (Patricia Clarkson). Clarkson won the Golden Globe.

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