Paul Greengrass sets aside MEMPHIS and may take on Travis McGee films

Paul Greengrass has had to set aside his Martin Luther King Jr assassination film Memphis for at least a year. There are a number of projects that he is considering to fill the time. According to Deadline, Greengrass is leaning heavily towards an adaptation of John D. MacDonald's The Deep Blue Good-by series of novels with character Travis McGee. Dana Stevens and Kario Salem wrote the script for the film for 20th Century Fox with Appian Way partners Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson-Killoran. They are serving as producers along with Amy Robinson and Peter Chernin. It's being developed as a possible starring vehicle for DiCaprio and may be turned into a franchise.

Oliver Stone had been seriously considering the project before he signed on to direct Savages. DiCaprio is currenlty filming Clint Eastwood's J. Edgar and is set to move on to star in Baz Luhrmann's The Great Gatsby so timing could be an issue. DiCaprio has been interested in playing the role of Travis McGee for a while. The character is "a beach bum who lives on the houseboat The Busted Flush. When he needs money,  McGee takes “salvage consultant” jobs, recovering property for clients, taking a big percentage, and getting into misadventures along the way." The Deep Blue Good-by was published in 1964, first of a 21-volume series.

Financing could not be pulled together quickly enough on Memphis so Greengrass has been looking at other projects. Here There Be Monsters, a Legendary Pictures project scripted by Brian Helgeland is one of the notable projects. Legendary's Thomas Tull and Jon Jashni and Mandeville's David Hoberman and Todd Lieberman are producing. The film is based on an original idea by Tull. It focuses on "British naval officer John Paul Jones, who's wrongly stripped of his commission and is hired by a rich shipping magnate to investigate the disappearance of his merchant ships in the North Atlantic. Jones and his shipmates slowly realize that it's the work of a sea serpent, and they use unconventional yet visionary naval strategies to battle the creature and stay alive." Several directors are being considered for the film, which Legendary is making under its overall agreement with Warner Bros.

I would love to see either of these films made by Greengrass actually. I really think that The Deep Blue Good-by will translate well to screen. What makes it even better is that DiCaprio is interested in starring in the role, which I think he'd be a great fit for.

What are your thoughts on this news?

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