Johnny Depp to Become the Secret Spy Version of Magician 'Houdini'
After directors like Gary Ross and Joe Wright flirted with bringing famed musician Harry Houdini to the big screen with an adaptation of The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America's First Superhero, last summer we learned that RED 2 and Galaxy Quest director Dean Parisot would be at the helm of the film for Lionsgate and Summit. Now we might have a star for the film as THR has learned that Johnny Depp is currently in talks to take the role which doesn't just focus on Harry Houdini, the legendary master illusionist, and his career as a magician, but also dives into the secret life of the renaissance man.
More than likely the title will be shortened, but the premise revolves around Harry Houdini, the world-renowned escape artist, and his involvement with helping the Secret Service, local police organizations, and even whispers of him being a British spy. The project has been described as a mix of Indiana Jones and Sherlock Holmes, he script comes from Noah Oppenheim (Snabba Cash, War Games remake). We're betting the success of Now You See Me got Summit/Lionsgate excited about the prospect of more magic infiltrating another genre of films.
But it's hard to say if Depp's schedule will work out to allow his involvement. Right now Depp is shooting Mortdecai before heading to Black Mass. He will immediately follow that project with the Alice in Wonderland sequel Through the Looking Glass at Disney. Sometime after that, Depp is supposed to stick with Disney for Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, but there's no guarantee the film will be ready to go. Plus, Depp might still be attached to The Night Stalker as director Edgar Wright is circling back to the project. There might be enough time between both Disney sequels to allow Depp to shoot the film before setting out for the high seas as Captain Jack Sparrow, but there's no guarantees yet.