Last summer we learned that Johnny Depp and his Infinitum Nihil production company had teamed up with Disney on two potential projects: a drama centering on Paul Revere and a feature film adaptation of the 1970s TV movie The Night Stalker. The latter was being developed as a potential starring vehicle for Depp, and now Disney has made an inspired directing choice for the project: Edgar Wright. The original Night Stalker TV movie and subsequent series focused on tabloid reporter Carl Kolchack, whose investigations always lead to perpetrators of the supernatural sort (ie. zombies, vampires, werewolves, oh my!). Hit the jump for more on the project and the nature of Wright and Depp’s involvement.
In case you live under a rock, Wright is responsible for the stellar feature trifecta of Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. He’s undeniably one of the most exciting young filmmakers working today and has a knack for infusing each project with his wholly unique and wildly entertaining visual and verbal style. Deadline reports that no writer has been set on The Night Stalker yet, and Wright will “oversee and shape the project” alongside Depp and his Infinitum Nihil partner Christi Dembrowski from the ground up.
Wright has co-written his previous directorial efforts, so I wouldn’t be surprised if he takes a stab at the screenplay himself. I can’t help but feel giddy at the prospect of Wright and Depp teaming up on this kind of material; the story elements are right up their alley and it’s not hard to see Wright knocking this one out of the park. The project is being developed as a star vehicle for Depp, and the film will be tailored to fit Disney’s family-friendly mandate so the rating is likely to be PG-13.
Given that Wright is coming aboard during the inception stage, production on The Night Stalker is most likely a ways off. Wright is attached to direct Ant-Man for Marvel and wrote the script with Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish. Furthermore, if Twitter is to be believed, Wright is also working on the script for the final film in his so-called “Blood and Ice Cream Trilogy” alongside Simon Pegg. The pic would reunite the Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz team of Pegg and Nick Frost.
Watch the opening of the original The Night Stalker below: