Hunnam will play the role originated by McQueen, while Malek is in talks to take on Dustin Hoffman’s character. The movie will shoot in September, directed by Michael Noer from a script by “Prisoners” writer Aaron Guzikowski.
“Papillon” is backed by Red Granite, and Joey McFarland, Riza Aziz, David Koplan, Ram Bergman, and Roger Corbi are producing.
The movie is a modern retelling of the original, based on the memoirs of convicted felon and fugitive Henri Charriere, who staged an epic escape from Devil’s Island, a notorious penal colony in French Guiana, South America. The petty criminal from the Parisian underworld was unjustly convicted of murder in 1930s France. Charriere provides protection from fellow thug inmates for quirky counterfeiter Louis Dega (to be played by Malek), who in turn agrees to finance his prison escape.
Malek was recently nominated for an Emmy for his role as Elliot on the hit USA show “Mr. Robot,” which is currently in its second season.
He is repped by WME. Deadline Hollywood first reported the news.