Teenager Zach Sobiech inspired thousands of Minnesotans with the song he wrote before he died from a rare form of cancer, and it now looks like his heroic fight will be coming to movie theaters around the world.
Laura Sobiech confirmed to BringMeTheNews the studio had optioned the rights to her book, which it intends to turn into a movie entitled "Clouds" after the song Zach, from Lakeland, wrote and released in December 2012.
The song became a phenomenon. As of Tuesday it has been viewed more than 12 million times on YouTube, and annual commemorations of Zach's life have attracted thousands of people to the Mall of America in December the past few years.
Warner Bros. told BringMeTheNews it could not comment on development deals, but did say that the information in the Variety story is accurate.
The entertainment magazine reports Justin Baldoni, star of TV comedy "Jane the Virgin," is attached to direct and produce the film and Casey LaScala – whose producing credits includes Donnie Darko – will adapt and co-produce.
Baldoni has previously told Sobiech's story – he produced and directed a 22-minute documentary called "My Last Days: Meet Zach Sobiech," which was presented on YouTube by SoulPancake in collaboration with WayFarer Entertainment.
Sobiech had battled osteosarcoma – a rare form of bone cancer that is diagnosed in about 400 children in the U.S. each year – for four years when he died in May 2013.
His mother wrote "Fly a Little Higher: How God Answered a Small Town Mom's Prayers in a Big Way" after his death and released it a year after his death.
The Star Tribune notes it explores the strain her son's illness put on the rest of the family, the anxiety she suffered from during his battle with cancer, and the role her Christian faith played as she coped with his illness and death.