According to an exclusive report from Deadline, Focus Features has teamed with producer Don Handfield’s company, Motor, to acquire the rights to Switched On: A Memoir of Brain Change and Emotional Awakening by John Elder Robison. Emma Frost (“The Man in the High Castle”, “The White Queen”) has been tapped to adapt the book.
John Elder Robison, an autism advocate, is best known for his 2007 memoir, Look Me in The Eye, which describes Robison’s childhood and his trials growing up with undiagnosed autism. At 40, Robison was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome. Following the bestselling success of Look Me in the Eye, Robinson was given the opportunity to take part in a trailblazing study led by one of the world’s foremost neuroscientists. The study would involve Robison undergoing an experimental brain therapy knowns TMS, transcranial magnetic stimulation, with the hopes of developing a fuller understanding and address the issues at the heart of autism. Following the therapy, Robison discovered that he can now discern a range of feelings in others. However, his newfound insight places Robison on a newly shifting emotional ground and upsets the world he has built for himself.
Don Handfield, who will serve as producer on the project, had this to say, “John’s story is so timely and touching, it’s a privilege to be able to partner with Focus to bring this incredible true story to life. Emma Frost is such a terrific and sought after writer and we are delighted to have her voice behind this project.”