Artisan Pictures has tapped Oscar-nominated scribe Will Rokos to pen “Billy Liar,” an updated remake of the 1963 John Schlesinger film. Paul A. Kaufman will produce the pic.
“Billy Liar” is the story of a man who escapes his dull small-town world by creating a rich fantasy life that inspires him to lie to everyone — including two women who each believe they’re engaged to him. Orin Woinsky, Artisan Pictures VP, production and development, will oversee the project.
“Billy Liar” was first a bestselling novel written by Keith Waterhouse in 1959. It was then adapted as a play by Willis Hall and Waterhouse, who later collaborated on the screenplay. The property also inspired a 1973 U.K. television series that ran for one season.
Rokos penned “Monster’s Ball” with Milo Addica; they are nominated for an Academy Award and an Independent Spirit Award for their original script.
Manifest Films’ Janet Yang is producing Rokos’ script, “The Swedish Job,” with James Merendino attached to direct. David Paymer is attached to direct another Rokos screenplay, “Shadowboxer.”