Hot and in demand after his award-nominated work in The Fighter, David O. Russell is expanding his repertoire beyond the field of quirky indie fare and action/sports genre pics to include... possibly both quirky comic book and video game adaptations - assuming he signs on to rewrite and direct 2 Guns.
Russell is currently in the midst of negotiations to tackle the big screen version of Boom! Studios' graphic novel 2 Guns - even though Mark Wahlberg recently indicated that Uncharted could begin filming this summer, with Russell at the helm.
Universal picked up the rights to 2 Guns back in 2008 and fashioned the project as a starring vehicle for Vince Vaughn, based on a screenplay by Blake Masters (Law & Order: Los Angeles). Heat Vision says that Russell is not only looking into reworking the 2 Guns script with the intention of directing, but that he is considering doing the film before shooting the video game pic, Uncharted. That's assuming Russell does not select the drama Old St. Louis - which both he and Vaughn (coincidentally) have been linked to since the summer of 2010 - as his followup to The Fighter instead.
Self-described as a pulpy heist venture in the vein of Ocean's Eleven and The Italian Job, the original 2 Guns comic book revolves around undercover DEA agent Trench and undercover Naval Intelligence officer Steadman - who team up to rob a local bank that is a cover for mob money, neither one aware of the other's true alliance. Things get even more complicated when it turns out the pair was set up and actually robbed $50 million from the CIA. Confused?
If there's one thing Russell has proven to moviegoers by now, it's that he's not interested in run of the mill mainstream fare. Neither The Fighter or Russell's Gulf War film, Three Kings, could be called conventional genre flicks and fans of the original Uncharted video game are quickly learning that the director has no interest in doing a straight adaptation either. Remember that Russell is also the guy who came up with the idea of an existential screwball comedy, aka. his second collaboration with Wahlberg, I Heart Huckabees.
2 Guns definitely sounds like the kind of less-than-straightforward crime caper that Russell would go for - and the results have the potential to be both entertaining and memorable. Whether that means gaming fans will have to wait longer than expected to see Nathan Drake (be he played by Nathan Fillion or Wahlberg) on the big screen, or if Russell will focus his energy on Uncharted before heading into the world of slick comic book adventures, has yet to be seen.
What would you like to see Russell make first? 2 Guns or Uncharted?