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‘Star of Persia’ Novel Being Adapted For TV By Samuel Franco, Evan Kilgore & M.E.G.A. Films

EXCLUSIVE: Morris S. Levy’s M.E.G.A. Films (Angie: Lost Girls) has acquired the rights to Jill Eileen Smith’s epic historical novel Star of Persia to develop as a television event series. Keeper of the Diary and Mayday 109 scribes Samuel Franco and Evan Kilgore are attached to write the series, based on the book and the duo’s own historical research.


Star of Persia is inspired by the Old Testament’s Book of Esther, following a brave peasant girl, Esther, who is enslaved by Persian King Xerxes, and forced to be a part of his harem. There, as she works to gain the trust and respect of the other women in the palace, she fights to become their protector and advocate. Now rising to wield great power as the King’s favorite concubine, she discovers a deadly coup among his most trusted advisors. On the heels of his army’s costly victory over the Spartans at the Battle of Thermopylae (as seen in Zack Snyder’s 300), Esther must decide whether to expose and foil the plot, or become complicit in the downfall of an empire.

Franco and Kilgore also will executive produce. M.E.G.A. Films is producing.

“We are excited and believe that Esther and King Xerxes’ story about love, war, betrayal, and vengeance is filled with high palace intrigue, and should appeal to any fans of 300, Game of Thrones, and the classic, The Ten Commandments,” said Levy and Franco.

Franco & Kilgore sold their limited event series The Fall of the House of FIFA to FX Networks, and a series about the Kennedy Dynasty to Peacock titled Camelot. In the feature space, the duo is known for the critically praised Keeper

of the Diary, the wrenching, emotional story of Otto Frank’s struggle to get his daughter Anne Frank’s diary published, set up at Searchlight Pictures.

Smith is best known for her award-winning book series about impactful women, including The Wives of King David, Wives of the Patriarchs, Daughters of the Promised Land, among others.

As a producer, Levy’s credits include Affluenza, the critically-acclaimed film Descent starring Rosario Dawson, the award-winning web series Cop Show, and the HBO documentary Seduced and Abandoned which premiered at the Cannes Film Festival. He is also known for The Ten starring Jessica Alba and Paul Rudd.

Franco & Kilgore are repped by Verve Talent & Literary and Morris Yorn Levine Krintzman Rubenstein Kohner. Author Smith is repped by Wendy Lawton of Books & Such Literary Management.

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