Ben Affleck is no longer directing a feature version of Stephen King’s post-apocalyptic novel “The Stand” for Warner Bros. and CBS Films with “Crazy Heart” director Scott Cooper on board to helm and rewrite the script.
Affleck, who came on board Thursday to take on the Batman role in Warner Bros.’ Batmann-Superman tentpole, has been attached to “The Stand” since 2011. He remains on board to direct Warner’s adaptation of Dennis Lehane’s “Live by Night,” which centers on the gangsters who ran rum from Cuba to Tampa to Boston during Prohibition.
Cooper directed Christian Bale in Relativity’s “Out of the Furnace,” which opens Dec. 6. Woody Harrelson, Casey Affleck and Zoe Saldana also star in a story that follows Bale’s character dealing with his missing brother.
Warner Bros. and CBS Films set up “The Stand” in 2011 with Mosaic and Roy Lee attached to develop and produce. Cooper agreed to come on to the project in part due to what he saw as the strength of David Kajganich’s adaptation.
CBS has the option to participate on the financing and Warners will handle worldwide marketing and distribution.
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“The Stand,” originally published in 1978, is divided into three parts and launches with a pandemic that leads to the death of an estimated 99.4% of the world’s human population. Tome chronicles the cross-country odysseys undertaken by a small number of survivors who are drawn to Boulder, Colo., and Las Vegas, where a final confrontation between two camps takes place.
“The Stand” was adapted into television miniseries for ABC in 1994, directed by Mick Garris and starring Gary Sinise, Molly Ringwald, Rob Lowe, Miguel Ferrer and Laura San Giacomo. Studios haven’t yet decided how many “Stand” films to make to encompass the scope of the book.
The Deadline.com site first reported Cooper’s attachment.