The Cormac McCarthy adaptation train is really rolling
now. With the Coen Brothers’ No Country For Old Men one of the blazing
highlights of recent film festivals (it topped the off the cuff Best Of lists
of nearly everyone I talked to at Toronto last week, and will probably top mine
as well) the reclusive author’s value to Hollywood is rapidly expanding.

John Hillcoat has been set to direct The Road, adapted
from McCarthy’s novel by Joe Penhall. Now we know that the Wagner/Cuban
enterprise 2929 Productions will produce, with Dimension nearly set as North
American distributor.

Before No Country I would have harbored extreme doubts
about the viability of this project even with Hillcoat on board – if there’s a
director perfectly suited for this material, it’s him. But The Road’s blend of
silent eulogy for a shattered world and violent survival struggle could resist adaptation even by Hillcoat. It’s a resolutely bleak story with little variation from a grey landscape. The only reminder that there’s any hope is the unnamed Man assuring his son that they’re the good guys.

It’s the sort of thing audiences flock to. Cheers to 2929 for taking a chance.

Viggo Mortensen has long been rumored to take the role of
the Man. That’s a casting choice I can really get behind; he can even leave his
pants on this time. When Devin last wrote about the film in April he mentioned
that casting likely wouldn’t be announced without a distributor in place. Now
that 2929 and Dimension are nearly set, we could be hearing a yes or no from
Viggo as early as next week. How about you buy a ticket to Eastern Promises and help the deal along?