Emma Stone Reteams With Her Best Co-Star For True Story Chess Scandal

By Douglas Helm | Published

emma stone

The triple threat of Emma Stone, Nathan Fielder, and production company A24 may team up again for the true-life project Checkmate about the Mangus Carlsen and Hans Niemann chess scandal. Stone, Fielder, and A24 have received critical acclaim for their most recent project The Curse, and Checkmate could be a chance to create that magic again. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the deal is either close to being closed or has closed already while talent deals are still being worked out.

The Package

emma stone

The Checkmate package is centered around a book deal and proposal from author Ben Mezrich, who wrote The Social Network and Dumb Money books, which were both adapted to film. If A24 closes the book deal, then Nathan Fielder is attached to direct, Emma Stone will produce through her Fruit Tree banner with her husband and partner Dave McCary, and A24 will back the project. Other details regarding casting and other talent attached are likely still being worked out.


emma stone

Checkmate promises to tell an interesting story about a recent massive chess scandal between Grandmaster Magnus Carlsen and the young Hans Niemann. Niemann was accused of cheating and rampant speculation began in the chess and sports community as a result. The bizarre scandal seems like the perfect fodder for Emma Stone, Nathan Fielder, and A24 after their masterful series The Curse.

Reportedly, the story is also more expansive than the rivalry between Carlsen and Niemann, as the book will also delve into the rise of the chess industry and the “collision of tradition and innovation” in the game. In other words, this is definitely one of the most interesting projects out there right now. And, as fitting for a project this interesting, the story behind how it got snapped up by A24 is also pretty fascinating. 

Other Offers

taron egerton

Apparently, the 12-page book proposal had multiple producers attached at one point, including a Ron Howard-directed version, a Netflix and Apple version with Taron Egerton starring, and a Warner Bros package with Harry Potter producer David Heyman involved. But A24 suddenly made a bold move with a guaranteed seven figure offer with 30 minutes to accept it. The offer was reportedly accepted and now Emma Stone and Nathan Fielder are already attached. 

A Bold Move For A24

One source said, “I’ve never seen A24 do that before,” which makes sense because A24 has been a company that typically operates off smaller budgets and sheer creative talent. However, perhaps the company has become emboldened by the massive success of its most expensive film yet, the recent Alex Garland-directed Civil War. Plus, there’s the fact that Emma Stone and Nathan Fielder taking on a project like this seems like a sure thing.

A24 Is Growing

A24 recently indicated that the company has plans to scale up, and getting a great project like this is certainly a step in the right direction. It’ll be interesting to see if Checkmate can be as simultaneously acclaimed and mind blowing as Emma Stone and Nathan Fielder’s The Curse. Stay tuned and we’ll keep you updated on this developing story as we hear more. 

Source: The Hollywood Reporter