Leonardo DiCaprio Talking to Oliver Stone About TRAVIS MCGEE

     March 31, 2010


Fresh off the news that Leonardo DiCaprio is eying the plum role of former FBI director J. Edgar Hoover in Clint Eastwood’s Hoover, Risky Business brings word that the actor may bed another A-list director in one Oliver Stone, now in talks to direct Travis McGee.  DiCaprio has long been attached to the project, and his Appian Way shingle is producing with intent to establish a franchise.  Mcgee is an adaptation of The Deep Blue Good-By, the first in a series of 21 John D. MacDonald detective novels that sorta-gumshoe and “self-described beach bum” McGee.  In fact, other reports suggest the adaptation will adopt the novel’s infinitely better (if less epynomous) title.  Robert Schwentke (Flightplan) and Gary Fleder (Kiss the Girls) have been rumored for various iterations of a McGee movie, but it looks like Stone is the frontrunner now for what would be his follow-up to this September’s Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps.

You’ll find me gushing over DiCaprio’s immaculate track record with Oscar-caliber directors as well as a plot synopsis for Macdonald’s Good-By after the break.

leonardo_dicaprio_03.jpgThe man sure knows how to catch the eye of some of Hollywood’s finest helmsmen.  In his career, DiCaprio has acted for:

-James Cameron: Titanic (1997)
-Woody Allen: Celebrity (1998)
-Danny Boyle: The Beach (2000)
-Marin Scorsese: Gangs of New York (2002), The Aviator (2004), The Departed (2006),  Shutter Island (2010)
-Steven Spielberg: Catch Me If You Can (2002)
-Sam Mendes: Revolutionary Road (2008)
-perhaps Clint Eastwood: Hoover (TBD)

Not to mention Oscar-nominees Lasse Hallström (What’s Eating Gilbert Grape) and Ridley Scott (Body of Lies).  Sadly, a discussion of directors recognized by the Academy must omit Christopher Nolan, who told DiCaprio how to emote in this summer’s mindbender Inception.

Here’s a plot synopsis for The Deep Blue Good-By.

“Cathy Kerr is innocence turned helpless desperation-all because of the smiling freckle-faced stranger named Junior Allen. Cathy has nowhere to turn-except to another stranger, that man named Travis McGee-who is a walking pillar of cold rage as he follows the depraved wreckage of Junior Allen’s trail.

Travis McGee is a self-described beach bum who won his houseboat in a card game. He’s also a knight errant who’s wary of credit cards, retirement benefits, political parties, mortgages and television. He only works when his cash runs out and his rule is simple–he’ll help you find whatever was taken from you, as long as he can keep half. Original.”

Sounds pretty Rockford Files-y, which is lame of me to say since it predates the seventies television staple by a decade.  All in all, seems like a project with quite a bit of potential.

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