Scott, DiCaprio team for 'Dweller'
Universal partners with Relativity
Monahan catches 'Chaser' redo
UPDATED 5:11 p.m. PT March 20, 2008
CORRECTED 7:30 p.m. PT March 20, 2008
Ridley Scott and Leonardo DiCaprio will reteam for a dark thriller titled "The Low Dweller" that Ryan Kavanaugh's Relativity Media has bought after a heated bidding war.
Scott and DiCaprio will produce the film, with DiCaprio attached to star and Scott eyeing to direct. The project has echoes of "The History of Violence" and "No Country for Old Men," is a spec from first-time writer Brad Ingelsby, a twentysomething working as an insurance salesman in Pennsylvania.
Ingelsby had been working on the script in his spare time and has yet to step foot in Hollywood. But he has hit the spec jackpot, with the project selling for $650,000 against $1.1 million.
Set in Indiana in the mid-1980s, the movie centers on a man (DiCaprio) trying to assimilate into society after he's released from jail, only to find someone from his past pursuing him to settle a score. In addition to the pursuer, a third male character and a female love interest are said to figure prominently in the script.
The spec piqued bidders across town, including Warners and Sony, who stayed in the bidding for some time before Relativity came away the winner late Wednesday night. The movie is thought to have a prestige bent a la "No Country," and those familiar with the project say they could see it being distributed by a studio or a specialty division.
Relativity, which is financing and producing the project, could package and make the movie itself or try to set it up at a studio. Ryan Kavanaugh's outfit, one of a select few entities that could compete with studios on higher-profile projects like this, counts Jim Sheridan's "Brothers" and Steve Zahn-starrer "A Perfect Getaway" among its current projects.
"Dweller" will be produced by Scott's Scott Free Prods. and DiCaprio's Appian Way as well as Ingelsby manager Brooklyn Weaver. Michael Ireland at Appian Way brought the project to the shingle.
The movie would be the second for DiCaprio and Scott. They just wrapped the geopolitical thriller "Body of Lies" for Warners. DiCaprio next reteams with another A-list director when he begins shooting Martin Scorsese's period thriller "Shutter Island" this spring. Scott is prepping "Nottingham," the Robin Hood romance with Imagine/Universal.
The project is one of the first big spec sales after the writers strike, though given Ingelsby's frosh status, he wouldn't have been affected by the labor stoppage.
Scott and Ingelsby are repped by WMA; DiCaprio is repped by the Firm.
Borys Kit contributed to this report.