Five years after he took home the Oscar for his instantly iconic performance as Nazi Colonel Hans Landa in Inglourious Basterds, Christoph Waltz has yet to convince us that he should ever stop playing the bad guy. Luckily, we have word that the actor is going psycho once more, for crime drama The Worst Marriage in Georgetown, which he’ll also direct.
The project, scripted by Pulitzer Prize winner David Auburn, will mark Waltz’s directorial debut. It’s adapted from Franklin Foer’s July 2012 article of the same name for The New York Times Magazine, which told the true story of Albrecht Muth, an eccentric young man who seduced and wed an elderly widow named Viola Drath after spinning her a web of lies about his background. Together, they threw lavish parties at Drath’s Georgetown house, only for Muth to fall under suspicion when Drath was murdered.
Muth, who was just 26 when he married the 71-year-old widow in 1971, was eventually convicted of her murder and sentenced to 50 years in prison last year.
If you haven’t checked out Foer’s piece, it’s a fascinating work of stranger-than-fiction reporting that’s definitely worth a read. And though it’s exciting that Waltz will be trying his hand at direction for the adaptation, what’s really thrilling is just how perfect the actor, who has also gone bad for roles in The Green Hornet, Water for Elephants, Big Eyes and the upcoming Spectre (among others), seems for the part. Of course, with Waltz clocking in at 58 years old, it will be interesting to see how the film deals with any scenes depicting Muth’s initial years of marriage to Drath.
Waltz aims to roll cameras starting on October 12, with the possible goal of getting the promising project in front of Academy members next fall. The Worst Marriage in Georgetown is being fully financed and produced by Voltage Pictures, which shouldn’t have any trouble selling the pic at Cannes.