Warner Brothers has acquired the rights to a South Korean serial killer film for Oscar-winning screenwriter William Monahan to adapt as a potential star vehicle for Leonardo DiCaprio. Thankfully, that South Korean serial killer film is not Bong Joon-ho’s Memories of Murder.
Rather than try to improve on perfection, Monahan will take a shot at The Chaser, which is about an ex-cop’s desperate pursuit of a psychopath who’s kidnapped a young girl. The film is apparently a huge hit in South Korea, and must have something more to recommend it than the usual serial killer conventions for Warner Brothers to plunk down $1 million-plus for the remake rights. Monahan is a no-brainer hire for WB: he won the Academy Award for transforming the Hong Kong thriller Infernal Affairs into The Departed, and he’s got a solid relationship with Leonardo DiCaprio (who wrapped the Monahan-scripted Body of Lies last fall). There’s no indication that the studio will come calling for Martin Scorsese, but you know they’ll make the obligatory overtures (even though he’s currently making a genre picture with Shutter Island).
Since this is an Asian film, Vertigo Entertainment’s Roy Lee and Doug Davison will be producing, as will Dan Lin and Monahan (and possibly DiCaprio). For those of you interested in catching the original South Korean film, hope you’re equipped for all-region!