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West Memphis Three Movie In Development: Atom Egoyan To Direct Feature Film

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WEST MEMPHIS THREE FREED

The documentary "Paradise Lost 3" will not be the only on-screen word about the case of the West Memphis Three.

The case, which in 1994 saw three teenagers convicted in eastern Arkansas of murdering three young boys, was the focus of criticism from advocates, filmmakers and celebrities. A 2007 DNA test failed to match the three men to the crime, and on Friday, a judge released Damien Echols, Jessie Misskelley Jr. and Jason Baldwin after 18 years of imprisonment, with a legal battle over their guilt still pending.

In a bit of serendipitous timing, given the dramatic court decision, a new feature film based on the case of the case is in pre-production, ready for a spring 2012 shoot. Deadline reports that the film has been in the works since 2006, and is now undergoing rewrites -- especially, it would figure, to the last act.

Based on the 2003 book, "Devil's Knot: The True Story of the West Memphis Three," by Mara Leveritt, it will be a small budget flick directed by Atom Egoyan.

The documentary, "Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory," by docu-filmmakers Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky, is the third in an Emmy Award-winning series of films that became advocacy works on behalf of the three men. Already cut, it will debut as-is at the Toronto International Film Festival before getting re-edited for the new twist in the case. According to The Hollywood Reporter, it will receive a short theatrical run, to qualify it for the Academy Awards, before airing on HBO.

For more on the Egoyan film, click over to Deadline.

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