Mark Romanek to Helm Action Thriller Norco

MadRiver Pictures announced today that Mark Romanek (One Hour Photo, Never Let Me Go) is in final negotiations to direct the action-thriller Norco. The recently-launched MadRiver Pictures will finance and produce the actioner, which is based off a script written by Adair Cole (San Patricios). Producers include Marc Butan and Mason Novick (Juno, Ricki and the Flash) with Edward Fee (The Last Stand) executive producing, and Michelle Knudsen (500 Day of Summer) co-producing.

Norco is inspired by the true story of a 1980 North Corona, California bank robbery and manhunt. The robbers were heavily armed with assault rifles, shotguns and pipe bombs. The subsequent shootout and high speed chase was the most violent in American history, and resulted in the destruction of over 30 police cruisers, the downing of a police helicopter and countless injuries. The famed shootout changed law enforcement forever and resulted in officers arming themselves with automatic weapons, the first step in today’s militarization of the police.

“Adair wrote a script that tells this story with a raw, almost matter-of-fact intensity that it makes you feel like you are there,” says Butan. “Adding Mark to the mix brings it all home, as he is one of the few filmmakers out there who provides the visual style this piece calls for but also gets the performances from actors.”

Romanek is represented by CAA and LBI Entertainment, and writer Adair Cole is represented by UTA and MXN Entertainment.

(Photo Credit: Apega /