Johnny Depp had been in early talks in 2014 to star as Houdini in the movie, based on the biography “The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America’s First Superhero.” But Depp’s deal did not go through and no other actors are currently attached.
Frank Marshall and Bruce Cohen have been attached as producers for several years. The project is based on the 2007 biography by William Kalush and Larry Sloman that traces the life of the renowned magician from poverty to wordwide fame, providing details into his increasingly dangerous feats, his secret life as a spy and a plot to subvert his legacy. Houdini died on Halloween in 1926.
Dean Parisot, director of Lionsgate’s “Red 2,” was on board to helm in 2014. The script has been written by Noah Oppenheim, whose credits include “The Maze Runner” and “Jackie.”
Trachtenberg made his feature film debut on “10 Cloverfield Lane,” a science-fiction psychological thriller that was written by Josh Campbell, Matthew Stucken and Damien Chazelle. The film starred John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and John Gallagher, Jr., and followed a young woman held in an underground bunker with two men who insist that the Earth has become uninhabitable. “10 Cloverfield Lane” was produced by J.J. Abrams and generated over $110 million in worldwide box office.
Trachtenberg is repped by ICM Partners and Oasis Media Group. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.