John Krasinski may direct Matt Damon in the new drama, The King of Oil. Krasinski, who is arguably best known for his role as Jim Halpert on The Office, announced himself as a filmmaker to watch earlier in 2018 with A Quiet Place. The taut and emotional thriller earned widespread praise when it was released this spring and earned $329.8 million at the worldwide box office. Paramount is keen on making a sequel to the smash hit, and Krasinski will definitely be involved.
As development begins on a Quiet Place franchise, all eyes have been on what Krasinski will do next. A few months back, reports indicated he was going to produce (but not direct) the sci-fi film Life on Mars. As for what he'll helm in the future, he could have his eye on a fascinating true-story drama.
According to Deadline, Damon is in early talks to star as fugitive billionaire Marc Rich in The King of Oil. The movie falls under Krasinski's production banner, Sunday Night Productions, and some believe he could decide to direct. However, at this point, it's too early to say if that will be the case. Joe Shrapnel & Anna Waterhouse are adapting the screenplay from the book The King of Oil: The Secret Lives of Marc Rich.
Save for an Oscar-nominated turn in 2015's The Martian, Damon has arguably hit a bit of a snag of late. Several of his recent starring vehicles, including Jason Bourne, Suburbicon, and Downsizing didn't leave much of an impression, so he's due for a comeback role. Ideally, his part in James Mangold's Ford vs. Ferrari will be just that, but regardless of what happens there, Rich should be a compelling character for Damon to portray. For those who don't know, he was a Holocaust survivor who became one of the most successful businessmen of the 20th century, prior to being hit with 65 criminal counts in 1983. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton pardoned Rich on his last day in office. The biography on which the film is based wasn't afraid to get into some of the unsavory aspects of Rich's life, so hopefully Krasinski can do something similarly interesting with the material.
Should this come to pass, Damon and Krasinski will be hoping for results akin to the last time they collaborated, which was as producers on Manchester by the Sea. That drama, helmed by Kenneth Longergan, was one of 2016's most acclaimed offerings, earning six Academy Award nominations (it won Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay). On-paper, The King of Oil certainly has the potential to be an Oscar contender, but that'll all depend on the execution. Moviegoers may recall Krasinski and Damon co-wrote Promised Land, and that film came up short of its aspirations.
The King of Oil does not have a release date as of this writing. We'll keep you updated on the latest information.