Hart Sharp Entertainment will produce the picture, about an undergraduate whose father, a famous author, visits the college campus. The story was published in Boyle's 2001 collection "After the Plague." Margulies told Playbill.com, "I first read 'Achates' (pronounced Ek-KAT-eez, after Aeneus's faithful companion, and yes the title is likely to change) in The New Yorker about 10 years ago and responded to the funny, tender, angry voice of the eponymous narrator. The story was rather short but in its premise I saw the potential for a rich father-son story played out not in a domestic setting but on a college campus. I thought I could have a lot of fun with it."
Margulies, who teaches playwriting at Yale, also wrote Broadway's Brooklyn Boy, as well as Sight Unseen (produced by Manhattan Theatre Club Off-Broadway and on), The Loman Family Picnic, What's Wrong With This Picture?, The Model Apartment and more. Dinner With Friends won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
According to Variety, John Hart, Jeff Sharp, and Robert Kessel are producers of "Achates McNeil," Michael Hogan is executive producer and Nina Wolarsky is co-producer.
Variety noted that Hart Sharp's adaptation of David Auburn's Pulitzer Prize winner "Proof" will be released later this year, and the company is now in production on an adaptation of Armistead Maupin's "The Night Listener," starring Robin Williams.