Former Doctor Who star Matt Smith has officially been cast as notorious criminal Charles Manson in Charlie Says, from the director of American Psycho. While certainly not a man to be praised, Manson is of course one of the most well-known psychopaths in recent history, leading a band of violent murderers dubbed The Manson Family. Manson’s followers would do anything their charismatic leader wanted, including brutal killings and other vicious crime sprees.
Given Manson’s level of societal infamy, he’s naturally been the subject of quite a few movies and TV shows. Multiple actors have taken a shot at playing the madman on screen, with one of the most recent being Gethin Anthony on NBC’s short-lived 60s-set crime drama Aquarius. American Horror Story stalwart Evan Peters also brought Manson to life on last year’s Cult season, although he was but one of many cult leaders Peters portrayed.
While Manson’s life finally ended last year – after he spent most of it in prison for his crimes – it doesn’t look like Manson’s legacy of evil will stop serving as inspiration for fiction anytime soon. Quentin Tarantino is set to make a new film that takes place during Manson’s reign of terror – although it won’t be centered on Manson himself – with heavyweights like Leonardo DiCaprio, and – possibly – Margot Robbie on-board to star. Now, The Wrap reports that Matt Smith will play Manson in the newly retitled Charlie Says, a project formerly titled The Family.
The Family title was taken from one of the two books that provide Charlie Says with inspiration. The Family was a 1971 book written by author Ed Sanders, while the other book in the mix is The Long Prison Journey of Leslie Van Houten, by Karlene Faith. Like Tarantino’s film, Charlie Says won’t actually center on Manson, and will instead focus on three of his followers who were sentenced to death for their participation in the Manson Family murders.
In a reunion that will surely delight horror fans, Charlie Says will be written by Guinevere Turner and directed by Mary Harron, the duo behind 2000’s critically lauded American Psycho. Also among the cast are Carla Gugino (Gerald’s Game), Suki Waterhouse (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies), and Merritt Wever (The Walking Dead).
Charlie Says has yet to be assigned a release date.
Source: The Wrap
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