Gary Ross, director of The Hunger Games, has signed on to direct Houdini for Summit. The Playlist reports that the film will be based on an interesting novel called The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America’s First Superhero by William Kalush and Larry Sloman.
What’s interesting about it is that it brings forth the idea that Harry Houdini, the famous magician, “acted as a spy for Britain, was involved with the Secret Service and police organizations, and was asked to be an adviser to Czar Nicholas II’s court in prerevolutionary Russia.” Noah Oppenheim is writing the film and it said to be a “Sherlock Holmes/Indiana Jones” style thriller.
Though Ross is attached to the film, it won’t necessarily be the next film he makes. He has the sci-fi film Outback with Carey Mulligan and there’s also a civil war film that he’s been developing with Matt Damon. Plus, after the success of The Hunger Games, I’m sure he has a lot of new offers coming in.
It’s important though that Summit does get the film out the door soon. DreamWorks is planning a Houdini flick as well and so is Sony. With that in mind, it’s likely that Summit will push Ross to do the film in the near future, rather then wait on it.
Sounds like an intriguing project, though I’m not at all familiar with Houdini’s “secret life.” Personally, I’d rather see just a straight up biopic on his career as a magician but with Ross behind the camera this could turn out to be a solid film.
Hopefully we’ll receive more details soon on casting and an official start date. When we do we’ll let you know.