You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

WB seeks A-list ‘Twilight Zone’ helmer

Shortlist includes Christopher Nolan, Michael Bay, Alfonso Cuaron

Warner Bros. is bent on transporting its “Twilight Zone” pic to a higher dimension, focusing on top directors.

That was also the studio’s strategy in its 1983 version, but unlike that pic, which had four helmers steering separate segments, this project will feature a single storyline and one director.

Mutual interest is brewing between WB and at least three helmers: Christopher Nolan, Michael Bay and Alfonso Cuaron.

Sources say Nolan is the front-runner to get the offer, but though he has a close relationship with the studio, it’s not clear whether he’d take on the project due to his schedule and the “Zone” script’s similarities to “Inception.”

For Bay, it would be his first opportunity to work with Warner Bros. — and the studio has long coveted his services, given his track record. Sources add that Bay and his team are high on the script, but one possible obstacle is his desire to get started on passion project “Pain and Gain,” a black comedy set in the world of competitive bodybuilding.

Cuaron also has a relationship with the studio, as well as the most favorable schedule. He’s wrapping up production on the space adventure “Gravity” and has not committed to his next project.

Insiders say David Yates was on the shortlist as well, though his prospects have waned. There’s also a darkhorse in the mix: Rupert Wyatt, whose “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” has earned more than $400 million worldwide. Wyatt has not committed to his next project, either.

While each of the directors clearly has the pedigree to handle a project of this size, their vastly different styles suggest that the studio — though committed to hiring a big-name director — has not yet cemented its vision for the tone of the final product.

Leonardo DiCaprio would produce through his Appian Way shingle, along with Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Michael Ireland. Jason Rothenberg penned the script, and while plot details are under wraps, sources say the film would feature a single storyline that touches on several themes from the Rod Sterling TV show that ran from 1959-64.

The 1983 “Twilight Zone” pic was split into four stories, helmed by Steven Spielberg, Joe Dante, John Landis and George Miller.

More Film

  • The Fault in Our Stars

    Disney Retiring Fox 2000 Label

    Disney will stop making films under the Fox 2000 label, a move that could mean that its head Elizabeth Gabler will not be making the move to the Magic Kingdom, Variety has learned. The decision is surprising because Disney had previously stated that Gabler would stay on board at the studio even after it was [...]

  • Macon Blair27th Annual Gotham Independent Film

    Macon Blair to Direct and Write 'Toxic Avenger' Reboot for Legendary (EXCLUSIVE)

    Macon Blair has been tapped to write and direct Legendary’s reboot of the cult classic “The Toxic Avenger,” sources tell Variety. Legendary acquired the feature film rights in December and have quickly made the project a high priority at the studio. Lloyd Kaufman and Michael Herz of Troma Entertainment will serve as producers with Alex [...]

  • Danny Boyle Bond 25

    Danny Boyle Calls His Exit From 'Bond 25' a 'Great Shame'

    Director Danny Boyle has finally spoken out after leaving the upcoming 25th James Bond movie over creative differences. After splitting from the new 007 flick last August, Boyle told Empire in a story published on Thursday that the script he penned with his “Trainspotting” co-writer John Hodge “wasn’t finished, but it could have been really [...]

  • Film Review: 'Everybody's Everything'

    Film Review: 'Everybody's Everything'

    An elegiac documentary exploring the brief life of rapper Lil Peep, “Everybody’s Everything” certainly doesn’t lack for perspectives. Interviewing virtually everyone who knew the musician (born Gustav Ahr), directors Sebastian Jones and Ramez Silyan cover the waterfront, from Peep’s family to his girlfriends, his innumerable collaborators, his managers and his fans, trying to distill exactly [...]

  • A Brinks armored truck pulls into

    Fox Layoffs: Distribution and Marketing Leaders Out

    Layoffs have hit Fox following the entertainment company’s sale to Disney. The staff cuts are hitting employees at the SVP, EVP, and president level. Senior staff is expected to be among the first to be impacted. However, the cuts will be deep, with the ax falling hardest of Fox’s film team. There could be as [...]

  • Emily Blunt in Talks for Inspirational

    Emily Blunt in Talks to Star in Annapurna Drama 'Not Fade Away'

    Emily Blunt is in negotiations to star in Annapurna’s inspirational drama “Not Fade Away” with David O. Russell and John Krasinski producing. The project is based on Rebecca Alexander’s 2015 memoir “Not Fade Away: A Memoir of Senses Lost and Found.” Alexander was born with a rare genetic mutation called Usher syndrome type III and [...]

  • Yalitza Aparicio as Cleo, Marco Graf

    Alfonso Cuaron's 'Roma' Nabs Nine Nominations for 6th Premios Platino

    As was widely anticipated, Alfonso Cuaron’s triple Oscar-winning “Roma” dominated the 6th Premios Platino nominations, unveiled Thursday at Hollywood’s legendary Roosevelt Hotel, the site of the very first Oscars. It snagged a total of nine nominations, including best film, director, art direction, cinematography, and acting for its two Oscar-nominated actresses, Yalitza Aparicio and Marina de [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content