After entering talks with the Oscar-nominated Yorgos Lanthimos to helm an adaptation of the gothic western The Hawkline Monster, the New Regency production is moving forward as screenwriter Tony McNamara is in talks to reunite with Lanthimos after their work on the Oscar-winning The Favourite, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The novel, written by Richard Brautigan and published in 1974, told the story of two unlikely hero gunslingers who are hired by a 15-year-old girl named Magic Child to kill a monster living in the ice caves under the basement of a house inhabited by a young woman named Miss Hawkline, only for there to be more to the girl, the owner and the house than meets the eye.
The first attempt to adapt the novel came shortly after its release when Hal Ashby (Harold and Maude) worked to get an adaptation off the ground with Jack Nicholson (The Shining), Jeff Bridges (The Big Lebowski), Beau Bridges (My Name is Earl), Dustin Hoffman (Marathon Man) and Harry Dean Stanton (Cool Hand Luke) all considered to star in the film, but after rejecting Brautigan’s initial script and the author refusing to turn in a second draft, the project languished until Ashby’s death in 1988. A second attempt was mounted shortly after with Tim Burton (Dumbo) attached to direct and Clint Eastwood (Richard Jewell) and Nicholson set to star, but yet again the project failed to gain momentum.
New Regency, who has enjoyed a critically successful past two years with the Oscar-winning Bohemian Rhapsody, Golden Globe-nominated Little Women and acclaimed sci-fi drama Ad Astra and A24 psychological thriller The Lighthouse, acquired the rights to Brautigan’s novel in June.
The film will be produced by Roy Lee (It), Andrew Trapani (Winchester) and Steven Schneider (Pet Sematary) alongside Lanthimos, Ed Guiney and Andrew Lowe of Element Pictures.