Leigh Whannell in talks for Ryan Gosling’s Wolfman at Universal
This year saw Leigh Whannell bring a modern-day twist to H.G. Wells’ classic The Invisible Man for Universal Pictures in brilliant fashion and now he has his eyes set on another classic monster in the studio’s roster as he has entered talks to direct the Ryan Gosling-led reboot of Wolfman, according to The Wrap.
Sources previously reported that executives at the Hollywood studio had been meeting with directors this past month in hopes of making a decision on who will helm the project, and that Bad Education‘s Cory Finley was reportedly one of the directors in talks to take on the job, but it appears the studio is sticking with someone who not only just delivered them success but also is a major talent in the horror genre.
Should the deal go through, Whannell will also write the story treatment for the film whilst Lauren Schuker Blum and Rebecca Angelo (Orange is the New Black) are set to pen the script for the reboot. In addition to Whannell, sources report that Jason Blum has signed on to produce the film alongside Gosling via his indie powerhouse banner Blumhouse Productions.
Gosling himself was reportedly eyed to helm the project and direct at one point, which would’ve marked his second venture behind the camera after 2014’s Lost River, but after talks with the studio, both parties agreed it would be better for the Oscar nominee to remain in an actor position.
The film, based on a pitch from Gosling himself, is set to be penned by Lauren Schuker Blum and Rebeca Angelo, known for working on Netflix’s Orange is the New Black, and though details on the plot are unknown at this time, it’s believed to be set in modern day and follow in the footsteps of the Jake Gyllenhaal-starrer Nightcrawler.
Gosling’s project marks one of a few in which the studio is looking to help bring to life after the financial and critical failure of its attempted interconnected franchise, Dark Universe, which began with the Tom Cruise vehicle The Mummy. With the studio looking to focus on more character and filmmaker-driven projects rather than major franchise fare, they are currently working with Paul Feig for a crossover horror comedy Dark Universe, as well as taking pitches from James Wan and John Krasinski for other adaptations of their classic monster library. While the original Dark Universe was still in play the studio was previously courting Dwayne Johnson to portray the Wolfman.
(Photo by Jon Kopaloff/FilmMagic)