It looks like Shane Black’s spiritual successor to Kiss Kiss Bang Bang might be on the horizon, with Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe circling the lead roles. The 1970s-set noir film The Nice Guys has been in the works for quite a while, and was scripted by Black and Anthony Bagarozzi. We last mentioned it almost five years ago in a conversation with veteran producer Joel Silver, who is still shepherding the project. Now, it looks like Silver’s set to shop The Nice Guys to studios and financiers thanks to the news that Gosling and Crowe are being courted to star. Hit the jump for more.
As The Wrap reports, Gosling and Crowe are circling the leads of The Nice Guys, though it’s very early on in the process. Set amidst the smog of Los Angeles in the 1970s, The Nice Guys follows “Jackson Healy (muscle-for-hire, recovering alcoholic) and Holland March (private eye, practicing alcoholic), who are brought together by the suicide of a fading porn star. However, the dead girl’s aunt is convinced she saw her niece alive and well after the highly publicized incident. March needs money, takes the case, and within days, it’s blossomed into a far-reaching murder conspiracy, bizarrely rooted in smog and the U.S. auto industry.”
Here’s what Silver had to say about the project, keeping it mind that it was quite a few years ago:
Collider: Shane Black-what’s going on? Is there another project on the horizon?
Joel Silver: He’s working for us on a project called “The Nice Guys” which is kind of the next version of what “Kiss Kiss [Bang Bang]” was; a more advanced version. We love Shane very much and “Kiss Kiss” didn’t really do what we wanted it to do but it did help in that it’s the movie that Jon Favreau said was the movie that convinced him that Robert could in fact do “Iron Man” so it had a great effect on all our lives. But I love Shane and I promise it will happen soon.
Again, this is early in the process and scheduling issues, especially those of Crowe who has his feature directorial debut The Water Diviner to attend to, likely complicating things. I’d be just as surprised at seeing the team-up of Gosling/Crowe in this film as I would at the news that Robert Downey Jr. won’t be involved, but time will tell in either case.