The Dogs of Babel: According to Variety, Focus Features has struck a deal with producers David Heyman, Corey May and Dooma Wendschuh to finance and distribute the screen adaptation of author Carolyn Parkhurst's bestselling debut novel, "The Dogs of Babel."

Published last summer by Little, Brown, the book centers on a linguistics professor whose wife dies after falling from a tree. The man becomes obsessed with teaching their dog to speak in order to learn whether the death was an accident or suicide.

The "Babel" adaptation had been expected to land at Warner Bros., where "Harry Potter" producer Heyman's Heyday banner is based. However, Focus closed the deal early this week. Heyman teamed on the project soon after publication with Sekretagent Prods. partners May and Wendschuh, who had optioned the novel in galley form.

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