By: Sid Perriwinkle
I just got word that writer, actor and director Nick Cassavetes has joined New Regency Productions’ MANHUNT as helmer. Breck Eisner (The Crazies, Sahara) was originally attached to direct, but there’s no word on why he left the project.
The story follows a skilled bear hunter who is enlisted by the FBI to help track down a domestic terrorist hiding in North Carolina’s mountains. The tables are quickly turned though as the bear hunter discovers his target possesses uncanny survival abilities. As far as I know, Gerard Butler is still in talks to star in the film, but the role he would play is unknown. It’s really up in the air as to who he could play, as Butler has done a wonderful job portraying ultimate-badasses of both good and nasty variety.
Cassavetes should feel right at home with this project, since he’ll be re-teaming with “Children of Men” scribes Mark Fergus and Hawk Ostby. Cassavetes penned the screenplay for “Iron Man” with the writing duo back in 2008. Danny DeVito is producing for Jersey Films. Stacey Sher and Michael Shamberg are producing for Double Feature Films. Scott Lambert is executive producing for Management 360, while Alexandra Milchan executive produces for EMJAG Digital Productions.
Cassavetes broke into the industry back in the mid 80’s as an actor. He started off with minor roles in such films as Peter Bogdanovich’s “Mask”, Harley Cokeliss’ “Black Moon Rising” and Clay Borris’ “Quiet Cool.” In 1986 he received his first starring role as Packard Walsh in Mike Marvin’s “The Wraith.” His wonderful performance in the action-horror flick propelled his career, netting him roles in more thrillers such as “Blind Fury”, “Sins of Desire” and “Body of Influence.” In 1996 Cassavetes decided to try something new, testing his writing and directing talents with the film “Unhook the Stars” which starred Marisa Tomei and Gena Rowlands. Even though he continued acting for the next 16 years, the writing/directing fever never let go, as Cassavetes penned and helmed “My Sister’s Keeper”, “Alpha Dog”, “Yellow” and “John Q” (what I consider to be his best work). Since April this year, Cassavetes has been directing “The Other Woman” which stars Cameron Diaz. He is also penning the script for the untitled Rick “Freeway” Ross biopic.
Cassavetes is repped by Resolution.