Robbie Amell, star of “Upload,” “Code 8” and “The Babysitter: Killer Queen,” is set to produce and star in “Float,” a movie based on Kate Marchant’s popular Wattpad teen-romance story.
Wattpad has teamed with Collective Pictures — formerly Colony Pictures — to produce “Float.” Marchant’s “Float” has accumulated more than 25.5 million reads on Wattpad and is among the top 20 stories in the teen romance category on the user-generated fiction platform.
“Float” centers on 17-year-old Waverly, who after her parents’ messy divorce finds herself yanked from her comfortable life in Alaska to spend the summer in her aunt’s sunny beach town. Waverly quickly begins to clash with one of her new neighbors and the polar opposite of everything she represents: an arrogant, jaded beach bum named Blake (Amell). Things take a turn after Blake learns Waverly’s embarrassing secret — that she can’t swim — and her one-time nemesis, who’s the town lifeguard, offers to teach her.
“Kate wrote such an incredibly touching and relatable love story,” Amell said in a statement. “I hope the fans are as excited as I am to see these characters come to life.”
Collective Pictures was behind sci-fi/fanatasy movie “Code 8,” which raised $2.4 million from more than 30,000 supporters on crowdfunding site Indiegogo. Vertical Entertainment released the film in December 2019. After its April 2020 premiere on Netflix, “Code 8” trended globally and hit the No. 1 spot on the streamer’s movie chart in the U.S., U.K., Brazil and other countries.
“Audience engagement is the key to everything we do,” Collective Pictures’ Jeff Chan said. “When fans know they’re a part of the story, they want to show up and support it in a big way. We can’t wait to team up with Wattpad to bring this story to the screen.”
Wattpad, which has tallied nearly 1 billion stories uploaded to its platform, has more than 50 projects in development worldwide for film and TV adaptations. Those include Deanna Cameron’s “What Happened That Night,” which is being adapted by Oscar-nominated “Children of Men” screenwriter David Arata, and T.L. Bodine’s “The Hound,” which is being scripted by Angela LaManna (Netflix’s “The Haunting of Bly Manor”). Previous projects include the “After” film series and Netflix’s “The Kissing Booth,” both of which started on Wattpad.
Collective Pictures’ Jeff Chan, Robbie Amell and Chris Paré will produce, alongside Wattpad’s Aron Levitz and Jamie D. Greenberg. Wattpad’s Allen Lau will executive produce. Sarah Timmins of Black Birds Entertainment will also executive produce.
“With a global fanbase and millions of reads, ‘Float’ is an incredible story that audiences everywhere will fall in love with,” said Levitz, head of Wattpad Studios. “Like Wattpad, Robbie and the Collective team understand what it means to truly listen to audiences and leverage fan excitement to make hit entertainment.”
Toronto-based Wattpad says it has more than 80 million monthly active users who spend more than 23 billion minutes per month reading original stories. Wattpad Studios touts its Story DNA Machine Learning system, which uses AI to identify standout stories to develop as books, series or films.
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