The project is based on the Kevin Wignall novel “To Die in Vienna,” which will be published in June by Thomas & Mercer. Gyllenhaal will portray a Vienna-based civilian surveillance contractor for hire who is tracking a Chinese scientist. He interrupts a break-in at his apartment and the intruder escapes, but then comes back and tries to kill him — leading the contractor to believe that the CIA may be trying to kill him.
Focus has acquired the movie rights to the novel. Gyllenhaal will produce “Welcome to Vienna” with Riva Marker through his Nine Stories production company, which produced his Boston Marathon bombing drama “Stronger” and the family drama “Wildlife,” which premiered at Sundance and stars Gyllenhaal and Carey Mulligan. Nine Stories exec Annie Marter will be an executive producer.
Gyllenhaal received an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor in “Brokeback Mountain.” He received his first producing credit for 2014’s thriller “Nightcrawler.”
Wignall is a British writer who’s published “People Die,” “Among the Dead,” “Who Is Conrad Hirst?,” “Dark Flag,” and “For the Dogs,” which was adapted into the 2017 movie “The Hunter’s Prayer,” starring Sam Worthington, Odeya Rush, Allen Leech, and Amy Landecker. Wignall is represented by ICM Partners and Gelfman/Schneider. The news about “Welcome to Vienna” was first reported by Deadline.