NEWS YOU CAN USE: Behind Hollywood’s A-List Bidding War for a McDonald’s Monopoly Article.

Which would all be a happy Hollywood ending for any ink-stained wretch trying to pump out long-form narrative nonfiction these days. Except this wasn’t just good luck or some kind of fluke that “McScam” had so thoroughly connected with Hollywood: Klawans and Maysh had been developing the article with the specific aim of turning it into a film since 2016.

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In an era when grown-up mid-budget studio movies like the eventual McScam film are becoming an endangered species in Hollywood, it would be hard to overstate how thoroughly and successfully Maysh and Klawans captivated the entertainment-industrial complex with their planted story. Not that the town’s populace of agents, development executives, and stars looking for flashy projects seems to care.

“It was an intense experience,” says Klawans. Adds Maysh: “It was quite overwhelming. But I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it.”

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