Three days ago, Warner Bros. film chief Jeff Robinov left the studio and was replaced by three other executives, with Warner exec Greg Silverman placed in charge of production. Instead of starting out with a small, risk-free project, Silverman has landed a potential blockbuster for his first deal.
Deadline the studio acquired S. Craig Zahler’s upcoming novel Mean Business on North Ganson Street, which is already a good deal, since Zahler is quite a talented writer. But the big news here is that the future film will re-team Leonardo DiCaprio with Jamie Foxx, albeit in roles on the opposite side of the universe from the ones they played in Quentin Tarentino’s Django Unchained.
After the greatness of Django these two could be attached to an adaptation of this...
...and it would still attract audiences in droves.
DiCaprio’s production company Appian Way, which is becoming a mini-powerhouse, will provide non-Warner production duties. For the screenplay, Zahler will adapt his own novel, which is in the process of being shipped to publishers.
In Mean Business on North Ganson Street DiCaprio will play a hardened detective contacted by a man whose wife has gone missing. When the detective implies that the man's wife is a whore, the man commits a “desperate, tragic act” in the squad room, after which a disgraced DiCaprio is sent to the increasingly violent shittown of Victory, Missouri. He’s paired with another ruthless detective who got into trouble for publicly beating up a suspect. Foxx will be playing that abused suspect. Cops start showing up dead, murdered execution-style, and I’m guessing our hardcore dicks are put to task figuring out who’s behind it all.
I kind of wish Foxx and DiCaprio could be on the same side, but if Foxx is going to be a cop executing madman in this one, I’m willing to jump on board. I wonder if all of the cops will be white, thus extending his white people-killing pride that he got out of Django?
Mean Business is Zahler’s third novel, after 2010’s A Congregation of Jackals and the recently released Wraiths of the Broken Land. He wrote the screenplay for Alexandre Courtès’ surprisingly enjoyable horror thriller Asylum Blackout from last year. He also wrote the screenplay for what will be his directorial debut, the western horror Bone Tomahawk, which has an impressive cast including Timothy Olyphant, Kurt Russell and Peter Sarsgaard.
You can find Foxx dodging explosions this weekend when Roland Emmerich’s White House Down hits theaters, and he’ll be shocking audiences next year as Electro in Marc Webb’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2. DiCaprio, meanwhile, ruled theaters for a while as a rich man in Gatsby and will rule them again as another rich man in Martin Scorsese’s The Wolf of Wall Street in November.