Louis Leterrier to Direct Illusionist Heist Film 'Now You See Me'

Back in June it was announced that in-demand screenwriting duo Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci (Star Trek 2, Cowboys & Aliens) would be producing a heist film centered around a group of illusionists titled Now You See Me. We've heard very little about the film's progress in the last nine months, but it appears that it's finally gaining some momentum.

The Playlist reports that Louis Leterrier (The Incredible Hulk, Clash of the Titans) has signed on to direct Now You See Me and that it will be the filmmaker's next project. Leterrier was previously attached to a zero-gravity disaster film about a father searching for his son after the world stops spinning, but it sounds like that might still be a ways off. He was also a contender for directorial duties on James Cameron's upcoming 3D remake of Fantastic Voyage, but that gig ultimately went to Shawn Levy instead.

Now You See Me originated as a spec script by Boaz Yakin (Prince of Persia) & Edward Ricourt (Year 12) and the plot synopsis suggests that this might wind up being a pretty intriguing and original film:

“[The story] pits a crack FBI squad in a game of cat-and-mouse against a super-team of the world’s greatest illusionists, who pull off a series of daring bank heists during their performances, showering the profits on their audiences while staying one step ahead of the law.”

When I was watching the pilot episode of NCB's The Cape back in January, I felt a strong sense of déjà vu once The Carnival of Crime went on their bank robbing spree.  Then I remembered the plot of Now You See Me and wondered if somewhere Kurtzman & Orci were cursing the show's writers.

The Cape could use more of The Carnival of Crime

Fortunately (or unfortunately depending on how you look at it), The Cape never could decide what to do with that subplot and they certainly never fleshed it out as well as they could have. So I don't think Now You See Me is in any danger of appearing derivative.

I've seen Now You See Me described elsewhere as a cross between Ocean's 11 and The Prestige, but I really believe there's a good chance that the film could wind up being something incredibly unique. I'm especially looking forward to seeing how Leterrier handles the material.

I believe that Leterrier has an enormous amount of potential as a director, but in my opinion he has yet to make a truly great film.  However, I think he's exhibited a good understanding of film language and how to tell a story visually, so I'm hoping that the Now You See Me script is as solid as it sounds and that this is the project that showcases what he's really capable of.

Source: The Playlist.

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