Tradecraft: Leonardo DiCaprio to Play Nicholai Hel?
Deadline reports that Nicolai Hel, the hero of the classic spy novel Shibumi, by Trevanian, may at last be getting the big screen treatment. However, it is not in an adaptation of the late Trevanian's genre milestone; instead, Warner Bros. has made a deal to adapt the recent officially authorized continuation novel (a prequel), Satori, by Don Winslow (author of Savages). According to the trade blog, the studio will develop the book "as a star vehicle for Leonardo DiCaprio," with the actor's company Appian Way. Winslow will pen the script with screenwriter Shane Salerno (the two previously partnered to on Savages for Oliver Stone), who will also executive produce. Oddly, the Deadline story by Mike Fleming makes no mention of Trevanian or Shibumi. It's as if a deal were made to adapt Carte Blanche and the press acted like Jeffery Deaver had created James Bond! Very strange. Fleming does allow, however, that "the studio sees potential for its own Jason Bourne-type action franchise." Presumably this means eventually getting around to adapting the original novel... Satori takes place in the 1950s and finds Hel rescued from a Tokyo prison by the CIA on the condition that he'll work for them as an assassin. Another spy novel by Trevanian, The Eiger Sanction, did get a movie version during the author's lifetime, starring Clint Eastwood.