“Boardwalk Empire” alum Michael Pitt is returning to the bigscreen for the first time in five years, as he’s set to topline and produce “You Can’t Win,” an adaptation of adventurer Jack Black’s 1926 autobiographical novel of the same name that will be directed by “Zoo” helmer Robinson Devor.
Parts & Labor principals Lars Knudsen and Jay Van Hoy will produce with Robert Scarff and Zach Sebastian, as well as Pitt.
Devor and Pitt co-wrote the script with Barry Gifford (“Lost Highway”) and Charles Mudede, who worked with Devor on “Zoo” and “Police Beat.” Production is skedded to start later this month in Seattle.
Black’s bestselling novel tells of his experiences in the hobo underworld, freight-hopping around the Western U.S. and Canada while he explores the topics of crime, addiction, criminal justice and human folly from various viewpoints. William S. Burroughs cited “You Can’t Win” as an extremely influential book in his life, and it was among his inspirations for his 1953 semi-autobiographical novel “Junkie.”
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Pitt first came to attention as Michelle Williams’ love interest on “Dawson’s Creek” before going on to make a name for himself in daring indie fare such as John Cameron Mitchell’s “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” Bernardo Bertolucci’s “The Dreamers” and Gus Van Sant’s “Last Days.” He last appeared on the bigscreen as a sadistic villain in Michael Haneke’s 2007 remake “Funny Games.”
Parts & Labor recently produced Mike Mills’ “Beginners” and is in pre-production on the Ol’ Dirty Bastard pic “Dirty White Boy.”
Pitt is repped by WME and Parseghian/Planco, while UTA reps Devor.