Fanboys screenwriter Ernest Cline has nabbed a six-figure upfront deal for his first novel Ready Player One. Warner Bros. in conjunction with De Line Pictures won the heated bidding war for rights to the sci-fi adventure book shortly after Cline secured publishing rights with Random House. Deadline is reporting that Cline will adapt the novel into a screenplay himself.

The story follows young teen Wade Watts, who has become immersed in the on-line virtual world of the Oasis, a world-wide social networking utopia that allows its users to lead their dream life. When the game's eccentric creator dies, he sets an elaborate treasure hunt into play that will see the winner taking over his company. Wade willingly enters the game only to find himself up against corporate foes that will do anything, both in the virtual world and the real world, to win the treasure.

The bidding war for the rights to the novel was quite heated, with both Paramount and Fox also negotiating to secure a deal. According to Deadline, potential buyers liked the idea of creating a virtual landscape and utilizing new technologies in bringing this adventure to life on the big screen.

B. Alan Orange