I’ve never read the book myself but I know it by reputation and Glenn David Gold’s CARTER BEATS THE DEVIL is certainly an intriguing book that some critics are calling a masterpiece. The book was published 9 years in 2002 and now it seems its coming out of development hell as Warner search there Charles Carter and according to 24 Frames they have a short list of possible candidates and Johnny Depp is at the top of the list.
Carter Beats the Devil follows the fictional adventures of stage magician Charles Carter who gets embroiled in a conspiracy after the death of president Warren G Harding. It sounds a tragic romantic tale too with plenty of thrills and spills with many historical figures such as Harry Houdini, Max Friz (BMW Founder) and television pioneer Philo Farnsworth.
The rights to book were first bought by Tom Cruise with Robert Towne (China Town,Days of Thunder) to write and direct then that idea collapsed as did AMC’s plan to make it a television show. But last year Warner Bros picked up the pieces and got Michael Gilio (Keep coming back) to pen a script and a year on it seems he ‘s a script that actually works revitalising the studio’s enthusiasm for the book and now there hunting high and low for their lead star and director.
When you look at it on paper this is the type of character Depp thrives on, eccentric, interesting characters but Mr Depp is always on the top of every film studio’s wishlist due to the fact he’ll get bums on seats in cinema’s but he’s a very busy man. There is the small matter of Dark Shadows, Lone Ranger, Thin Man, Triple Frontier as well as more Pirates of The Caribbean, so when would he be able to fit this film in? If Depp is not interested in the part it seems Robert Downey Jnr is next in line for the part, so who would direct? Warner have sent out the film agencies have sent out the word on the project and the usual suspects will probably be connected and at this stage no names have been link but what we know is Warner are looking for a A-Lister.