Apr 17, 2007

Clive Owen To Spy For Tom Tykwer

Two potentially interesting new spy projects broke in the trades today. The first one, The International, really has me excited.

Variety reports that Tom Tykwer, the always-impressive director of Run Lola Run, Winter Sleepers and last year's Perfume, will direct Clive Owen in an “action-thriller” produced by John Woo. Let me repeat that to let it sink in: Tom Tykwer will direct Clive Owen in an action-thriller produced by John Woo!!!

I’ve always wanted to see what would happen if Tykwer turned his considerable talents toward an action movie. Granted, I’m sure he won’t deliver a straight-forward action movie; it will probably turn out to be much more than that. But to me he’s one of the most interesting directors in the world (who I’d love to see do a Bond, not that that would ever happen), and he’s got a great leading man in Owen. Variety goes on to undercut the excitement of the talent announced by blandly stating that Owen plays “an Interpol agent who investigates corruption at powerful banking institutions.”

Luckily The Hollywood Reporter manages to make the plot sound a lot better: “The story centers on an obsessive Interpol agent (Owen) who spearheads an investigation into one of the world’s most high-profile and powerful banking institutions in a n attempt to expose its role in worldwide arms brokering, corruption and murder. His efforts quickly turn into a deeper obsession when he comes up against more resistance by the law enforcement system he serves.” Count me in!

The International is scheduled to shoot in September in Europe, with a script by Eric Singer.

In other spy news today, Ridley Scott has lined up yet another espionage-related project. Fox 2000 has optioned a new novel by Rob Smith called Child 44 for him to direct. The novel, due in 2008, is set in Stalinist Russia and, according to Variety, “revolves around an officer in the secret police who is framed by a colleague for treason. On the run with his emotionally estranged wife, he stumbles upon a series of child killings and launches his own rogue investigation, even though it means risking his own capture.” Should Scott actually make Child 44, it won’t be until after he finishes Body of Lies, which Variety now claims is still titled Penetration in its movie version.

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