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TWC Land Bill Murray-Starrer ‘St. Vincent De Van Nuys’; Silver Pictures and Universal Take In ‘Outsider’

Written by on November 20, 2012 

I almost forgot about this one. Almost. Back in July, word hit that Bill Murray would headline a dramedy by the name of St. Vincent De Van Nuys, in which the actor would be seen, true to form, as a sour guy who’s still got a few lovable traits to his credit. Familiar, but the harder details (more of those in a second) have me eyeing at it in a positive light at the moment. The business side included.

As it were, Deadline claim The Weinstein Company are buying Ted Melfi‘s film — his feature debut, no less — with a hope to get things moving before our hair turns grey. (Additional cast members, a shooting date, or anything similar are not mentioned, but that should come before long.) Sooner rather than later, then, will we get to see St. Vincent, where Murray plays a war veteran forced to look after his neighbor, a 12-year-old boy whose mother finds herself too busy to provide everyday care. A bad idea, obviously, but all the questionable activities the kid finds himself witness to — “from fighting to drinking, gambling and how to cheat lie and steal,” in Melfi‘s words — are construed in his own mind as ways to learn. If only my age was like that.

There’s the clear chance for St. Vincent De Van Nuys to get a bit sappy, but Murray‘s own involvement — and, I think, the prior interest of Jack Nicholson — does enough proper lifting to have my eyes kept out for what comes of the thing. There’s no doubt they can find an adorable kid, at least.

Variety have their own acquisition-related news, as Silver Pictures — along with, through their first-look deal, Universal — have swooped in and picked up The Outsider. Though only in script form right now, the Andrew Baldwin-penned work has been in the interest of Warner Bros. since August of 2011, with the studio courting Daniel Espinosa (Safe House, Easy Money) and Michael Fassbender (or Tom Hardy) to direct and lead, respectively. Now that there’s been a transition after so much time, however, I suspect they’re not coming along, although Espinosa is still considering the project.

The Outsider is an entry into the now-rare Yakuza crime story, as the plot focuses on a World War II POW freed by the syndicate and brought back via their underworld. Things progress from there, including a romantic tryst with one of the women holding blood ties to the ranks — a decision seen as treasonous. It sounds good, and I can’t wait for someone to get it out there. Let’s hope it’s the right people.

Expect shooting to begin sometime in 2013.

Do the dealings on either project feel like a good thing?

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