Relativity film a tale of subs, Russian intrigue

With multiple movies in development, Antoine Fuqua is hardly hard up for work, but he’s still in search of a greenlight that has eluded him thus far. Now the “Brooklyn’s Finest” director may be one step closer to finding his next feature project, as he’s in final negotiations to take the helm of Relativity Media’s “Hunter Killer.”

Based on the novel “Firing Point” by George Wallace and Don Keith, story follows an untested submarine captain who must work with a Navy SEAL team to rescue Russia’s president, taken prisoner during a military coup. The two sides team to stop a rogue Russian general from igniting World War III. Jamie Moss, John Kolvenbach and Arne Schmidt penned the adaptation.

Original Film’s Neal Moritz and Toby Jaffe are producing with Relativity CEO Ryan Kavanaugh. Relativity’s Tucker Tooley will exec produce the pic, which is targeted to start production this winter.

Fuqua may be one of the most sought-after directors in Hollywood, but his projects keep stalling out. He had been expecting to start production on the Eminem-led boxing movie “Southpaw” in January, but DreamWorks pulled the plug on the picture in August and the filmmakers are now in the process of shopping the project to other studios.

Helmer was supposed to spend the summer shooting Morgan Creek’s Tupac Shakur biopic, but that film still hasn’t found its lead, and Fuqua is no longer attached to direct. In July, Fuqua signed on to direct an adaptation of John Huddy’s nonfiction book “Storming Las Vegas” for Summit Entertainment, which also courted him to direct its jailbreak drama “The Tomb.” He was also in the mix to direct the “Wolverine” sequel for 20th Century Fox, though James Mangold ultimately won the gig.

In November, Fuqua began negotiating to direct the comicbook adaptation “Afterburn” for Relativity, though there hasn’t been any movement on the project since then.

Most recently, CAA-repped Fuqua signed on to direct a feature-length documentary about Death Row Records co-founder Suge Knight for Showtime.

“Hunter Killer” is skedded to open on Dec. 21, 2012, against Disney’s “The Lone Ranger,” Paramount’s Brad Pitt starrer “World War Z,” Fox 2000’s “Life of Pi” and Universal’s untitled Judd Apatow comedy.

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