Karen Walton to pen Ava Lee crime novel adaptation for Strada Films

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Canadian screenwriter Karen Walton (Ginger Snaps) is to adapt Ian Hamilton’s Ava Lee crime novels as a theatrical movie for Strada Films.

Strada has chosen Hamilton’s The Water Rat of Wanchai as the first of four books in the Ava Lee franchise to receive big screen treatment.

Strada Films’ Sandra Cunningham and Robin Cass will produce the film franchise.

The Water Rat of Wanchai will introduce cinema-goers to Ava Lee, a globe-trotting Chinese-Canadian forensic accountant who recovers missing debts.

“Ian Hamilton’s heroine is just the kind of woman I’ve been hoping someone would get to screens of all sizes for a long, long time,” Walton said in a statement Friday.

Hamilton’s globe-trotting storylines for the Ava Lee character should make the screen adaptation ripe for structuring as an international co-production.

Strada Films is looking to English-language territories globally for possible financing.

The producer is meanwhile assembling development financing while Walton gets to work on the first film’s script.

A 2013 production is targeted for the screen adaptation.

Walton’s screen credits include The Many Trials of One Jane Doe, Heart – The Marilyn Bell Story, Queer as Folk USA and Flashpoint.