By: James Silverwolfe
Timur Bekmambetov is in early talks to helm the third MGM production of BEN-HUR. The project will tell the formative story of how Judah Ben-Hur, a Jewish prince, and Messala, the son of a Roman tax collector, grew up best friends before the Roman Empire took control of Jerusalem. It will also tell the parallel tale of Jesus Christ with whom Ben-Hur has several encounters which moves him to become a believer.
Keith Clarke (“The Way Back”) wrote the script on spec, which anyone can still do because the book is in the public domain. Joni Levin and Sean Daniel will produce.
The only Bekmambetov directed movie I can vouch for is “Night Watch,” which probably had the added help of being in russian and also being incredibly weird. But stateside he’s responsible for “Wanted” and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter.” Two of the most cumbersome movies I’ve ever seen. But, maybe he’s got an amazing American movie in him yet and this is just the outlet for it. I’m kidding. It’ll be interesting for sure but probably not very good.
He is repped by WME.