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Atanasoff is a suspenseful drama about the forgotten inventor of the first electronic digital computer and his enduring struggle for truth after his revolutionary ideas are stolen from him. His quest to set the record straight takes us on a 30 year journey through epic court battles between corporate giants, personal tragedies, and his eventual triumph and realization of the American Dream.

John Atanasoff is the son of an immigrant with a special talent for baseball. But only when the precocious young boy enters the fascinating world of mathematics, revealed in his father’s logarithmic slide rule, does he realize his true calling in life, that of an inventor.

Atanasoff, now a bright, eager graduate professor at Iowa State College, becomes frustrated by the cumbersome calculating machines at the time and sets out to create something better. This becomes his obsession and life’s work. One night, after hitting an exasperating mental dead end, Atanasoff hops into his car and begins driving. Two hundred miles later, he finds himself crossing state lines and walking into an Illinois roadside tavern. While sitting alone at a table, his mind begins to relax over bourbon and water. Suddenly it all becomes clear -- a scientific breakthrough!

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He creates the ABC (Atanasoff-Berry Computer) by inventing, implementing and revolutionizing scientific computer principles. The exact same concepts that continue to be used in today’s modern computing.

Atanasoff's personal and professional life is turned upside down after a visit of a colleague professor, John Mauchly, who starts exploiting his friend's engineering genius and personal trust in the pursuit of his own unethical ambitions. He claims Atanasoff’s concepts as his own in creating, what was then believed to be the first computer, the ENIAC.

Mauchly’s thievery of Atanasoff’s ideas and the open court battle between computer and corporate giants of IBM, GE, Bell, Honeywell, and SperryRand for patent rights finally gives Atanasoff his recognition. Sadly, the court’s ruling falls on deaf ears. World War II and the Watergate Scandal both conspire to keep Atanasoff away from becoming a household name.

With the end of the Cold War and the fall of the Berlin Wall, John Atanasoff is finally given the recognition he deserves as the inventor of the first electronic digital computer. He is responsible for making the world smaller, less distant, more connected.


STATUS - In Development

BUDGET - $25-40 mil

MODEL - Historical/ Period/ Drama


CREATIVE OVERVIEW - The Imitation Game, Genius (National Geographic Series)


FINANCIALS - Seeking equity in first position 20% premium into a 50/50 split