Director Update: De Niro Eyes 'Badfellas' for Besson, Weir Travels to 'The Keep', and More

Director Update: De Niro Eyes 'Badfellas' for Besson, Weir Travels to 'The Keep', and More

May 21, 2012

Another Monday is upon us and the summer movie season is revving up, but rather than talk about Battleship’s dismal box office performance, let’s find something positive to discuss today – something like directors signing on for exciting new projects.

Luc Besson supposedly “retired” back in 2007, but apparently the movie-making bug is harder to shake than he thought. As proof, he now has two new projects in development – one that he intends to direct personally.

The two films are Malavita and Three Days to Kill. Besson will direct the former, which is based on a book entitled Badfellas, and Robert De Niro is set to star. De Niro will play a former gangster now living in Normandy as part of the Witness Protection Program who winds up back in the action…somehow. Apparently, this is a lighter take on classic Mafia material, although even light Besson always comes packed with action.

As far as Three Days to Kill goes, Besson is keeping the details under wraps. All that’s known at this point is that it’s being compared to Taken, which Besson produced, only with more humor. Besson appears unlikely to direct this project, but perhaps that will change as it inches closer to production. [via IndieWire]


Weir joins The Keep

Peter Weir is set to return to his position behind the camera with an adaptation of The Keep – a “contemporary gothic thriller” based on a Jennifer Egan novel. This is not a remake of the Michael Mann film with the same name (that The Keep was based on a novel by F. Paul Wilson).

Here’s the novel’s official synopsis:

Two cousins, irreversibly damaged by a childhood prank whose devastating consequences changed both their lives, reunite twenty years later to renovate a medieval castle in Eastern Europe, a castle steeped in blood lore and family pride. Built over a secret system of caves and tunnels, the castle and its violent history invoke and subvert all the elements of a gothic past: twins, a pool, an old baroness, a fearsome tower. In an environment of extreme paranoia, cut off from the outside world, the men reenact the signal event of their youth, with even more catastrophic results. And as the full horror of their predicament unfolds, a prisoner, in jail for an unnamed crime, recounts an unforgettable story—a story about two cousins who unite to renovate a castle—that brings the crimes of the past and present into piercing relation.

[via The Film Stage]


Species helmer headed to the Heart of Darkness

If you don’t remember last year’s announcement that Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness – the book that inspired Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now – was being turned into a film, you’re probably not alone. It’s one of those things we’d all like to forget.

However, just because we all forgot about it doesn’t mean it’s not happening – and the project has now made a major change as it continues to move through the development process. Original director Peter Cornwell is no longer attached to the film – he’s been replaced by Species helmer Roger Donaldson has been hired to replace him. The film’s title has also been changed – it’s now known as Heart of Darkness, which is a million times better than the cheesy Apocalypse 2388. Here’s the plot breakdown:

APOCALYPSE 2388. Earth is on the brink of extinction. Legendary explorer KURTZ is sent on a desperate mission to scout an unknown planet on the far side of the universe. A planet that may sustain human life.

When communication with Kurtz mysteriously ceases, rookie flight officer MARLOW is assigned the perilous task of completing the objective. Tracking Kurtz into the unknown he reaches the new planet to find a race at the dawn of time.

However, Kurtz has his own plans for the new world and man’s last hope for survival. To achieve it he will Marlow into the heart of darkness to protect paradise.

[via MovieHole]

Categories: News, In Development
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