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Rupert Sanders to Direct Adaptation of 'The Kill List' Thriller Novel

by
June 20, 2013

The Kill List / Rupert Sanders

Following a tabloid debacle, we already know that director Rupert Sanders will not be behind the camera for the Snow White and the Huntsman sequel starring Kristen Stewart in development at Universal. The director was on the shortlist to take on Pirates of the Caribbean 5 until the job ended up in someone else's hands, but now Deadline has word that Sanders is attached to a new project called The Kill List. Not to be confused with Ben Wheatley's crime thriller Kill List, this new project is an adaptation of author Frederick Forsyth's espionage thriller novel of the same name, which is slated to hit shelves in August. More below!

The story is described as "an intricate chess game between a brilliant Marine, an Israeli agent, a teenage hacker and a mysterious psychopathic cleric," but here's the official synopsis for a better idea of the tale:

In Virginia, there is an agency bearing the bland name of Technical Operations Support Activity, or TOSA. Its one mission is to track, find, and kill those so dangerous to the United States that they are on a short document known as the Kill List. TOSA actually exists. So does the Kill List.

Added to it is a new name: a terrorist of frightening effectiveness called the Preacher, who radicalizes young Muslims abroad to carry out assassinations. Unfortunately for him, one of the kills is a retired Marine general, whose son is TOSA’s top hunter of men.

He has spent the last six years at his job. He knows nothing about his target’s name, face, or location. He realizes his search will take him to places where few could survive. But the Preacher has made it personal now. The hunt is on.

Sanders said Forsyth's new novel reminded him of something Hemingway wrote, "There is no hunting like the hunting of men, and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never care for anything else thereafter.” The director elaborated:

"It is an incredible privilege to work from Forsyth’s new novel The Kill List. It is a thrilling read and frighteningly accurate. It immerses us in the shadowy worlds of terrorists, spies, private contractors, US and UK special forces. It spans an epic, international world and delves deep into the psychology of its two main characters – ‘the hunter’ – a US Special Forces Tracker and ‘the hunted’ an extreme fundamentalist terrorist. Forsyth’s depth of research and authenticity creates a vivid and frightening story – a nightmare scenario that is all too possible. He predicted new strains of civilian terrorism long before the horrible murder in Woolwich and draws out conclusions to where such actions spread like a virus.”

Forsyth's works have hit the big screen before with older films like Odessa File and The Dogs of War, but it's been awhile since The Jackal hit the big screen in 1997. This certainly sounds like a timely story given the controversy surrounding certain military tactics by the United States government, and Forsyth has a built in fanbase that will turn out for the adaptation. But it's still early, and Sanders is only attached, so he could fall away before the project moves forward. We'll keep you posted as this project develops. Interested?

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  • boy-cott
    so Universal is hoping everyone has forgotten about RS and his predatory ways...HA!! I feel so bad for Frederick Forsyth being saddled with a director that will cause the project to tank at the box office.
    • grimjob
      I'm not familiar with what he did. What happened?
      • Cale
        When he made Snow White and the Huntsman, he cheated on his wife with Kristen Stewart.
        • Dela
          Yes Sanders cheated on his wife , hurt his children and preyed on Kristen using her to put the final nail in the coffin for a marriage that was over for sometime. They had filed for divorce twice before Kristen ever came on the scene. He used her as his personal instrument nothing more. He destroyed not only his family but Kristen and her relationship with Pattinson. I would like to wipe that smug sneer off his face, it turns my stomach.
        • grimjob
          Right. I remember hearing something about that now.
      • Dela
        You can't be serious....where have you been all year. Under a rock. The web and sites have all but tarred and feathered poor Kristen while this sexual pervert gets off.
        • grimjob
          Calm down. I remember something about her being involved with some "scandal". But I don't give a shit who celebrities are running around with.
    • Dela
      You are so right. Glad someone has the courage to say something in defense of Kristen. What this old man did was so wrong. He was part and parcel to destroying not only his own family but Kristen as well. He has gotten away with his dirty deed without suffering like Kristen has for almost a year now. Fair play , I think not. Universal is out of their ever loving minds hiring this guy. The studio had better protect the young female actors from this him. Men like him do not reform without serious professional mental help. Hope they hire a sexual therapist while he is working with young female actors. Men like him are on the prowl and never change, they just move onto their next victim. We fans have not and will not forget Sanders and his predatory ways. That smug smile of his tells it all. My stomach turns every time I see his face.
  • Laurie
    So you know for sure he was a predator in that scandal? You mean a younger woman has never targeted an older man? You mean the age difference of 19 years is impossible to imagine? Better ask Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones about that? I think he got a bad rap, and KS was no innocent! The first thing a girl should learn about life: Leave married men alone, especially those with young children!
    • Dela
      Never said she was innocent. Did you read what I commented on. This guy being older should have been wiser. He never gave a hoot about his wife and children and even less consideration for Kristen as to what she would have to suffer because of this. The media and public have vilified her for almost a year now. I don't know if any of us would like to live with such hate out there. The price she has paid was loosing Rob. The punishment here just didn't fit the crime. It's a hateful society , just read the comments against her. But there not a word said about him. He's gotten off far too easy.
  • Dela
    This Sanders is a womanizer , a pervert and preyed on a young actor. It's fact that when Rob showed up on the set several times he did not like what he saw with this Sanders guy. I honestly do not think she knew how to handle this guy or maybe was scared to.He did state that Sanders was way too friendly with her ,while she tried to rebuff him. It made him very uneasy. In fact Rob mentioned it several times during interviews. This guy is a pervert, womanizer and the lowest of individuals on this planet. How dare you post his ugly face on her site. Besides who cares what he is doing. I hope everyone who is upset with what this guy did avoids his future films. I know I will. Universal must be out of their minds hiring him after what he did not only to his own family but to a young actor. He has gotten off without any name calling , insults and bashing . She on the other hand has endured almost a year of insults and worse,lost the love of her life Rob and damaged her career because of Sanders. Liberty and Sanders were unknown before this and look at them now , they have won the game haven't they? I say post his smug face on his own site, he has one that is loaded with blogs on Kristen. He doesn't belong here. I hope the fans out there avoid anything this guy does in the future. IT'S PAY BACK TIME PEOPLE , NOW IS YOUR CHANCE TO SEND THE MESSAGE LOUD AND CLEAR ABOUT THIS SANDERS. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH !
  • DavideCoppola
    YO!! I've got the same headphones :D
  • Tess
    Funny how things go in Hollywood. Kristen is vilified , bashed and tortured for over a year now, and this guy gets rewarded with a directing job again. He's a man with a mid life crisis ,a predator , womanizer , a pervert and an abuser. He had no regard for his own family and less for her. Twice her age should have given him more wisdom to the fact what he was doing was WRONG. He ruined Kristen's career, her personal life and the relationship she had built with Rob for over four years. I truly feel she was in a difficult position and played along with it not knowing how to handle the situation she found herself. This man should never work with young female actors. He's a danger. Leopards don't change their spots. Wonder how he would feel if it were his daughter.
  • kominar
    I can see twilight teens commenting. Don't worry this movie is nothing for you. And by the way he is very good director.

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