Ansel Elgort (Baby Driver) is set to star in a film adaption of Daniel Riley’s GQ Magazine The Great High School Imposter.
An exceptionally bright kid who saw little hope for the life he wanted, 18-year-old Artur Samarin fled his crumbling Ukrainian hometown and came to the U.S. on a work exchange program, only to find himself manning a fryer at Red Robin for minimum wage. His desperation for a chance at the American Dream seemed possible when he befriended a childless couple who agreed to adopt him, helping him forge documents and enrolling him at the local school to maintain the ruse.
There, he excelled as a straight-A+ student, joined the Navy ROTC, and became a pillar of the community. Eventually, his dream turned into a nightmare as he was hauled in and, beyond charges made by the pseudo-adoptive parents who seemed to benefit financially from the scam, Samarin was ensnared for a relationship with a 15-year old student, while he pretended to be 17 but was actually 22.
Mike Makowsky will adapt and Jeremy Steckler of Condé Nast Entertainment is producing. Makowsky, Elgort, and Emily Gerson Saines will be executive producers.