Paramount Pictures has won the rights to Erik Larson's non-fiction book The Devil in the White City, which has Leonardo DiCaprio attached to star and Martin Scorsese set to direct. Paramount beat out four other studios, including Universal Pictures and 20th Century Fox. The adaptation is a passion project for Leonardo DiCaprio, who was attached to star when the adaptation was set up at Warner Bros. back in 2011. The studio let the rights lapse last month, leading to the bidding war that Paramount eventually won.
The Devil in the White City centers on Dr. H.H. Holmes (Leonardo DiCaprio), who is believed to be one of America's first serial killers. The story is set in 1893, during the Chicago World's Fair, where he is said to have killed anywhere between 27 and 200 people. Holmes built The World's Fair Hotel, which he designed to lure in his victims, specifically young, single women. The horrifying hotel housed a gas chamber, crematorium and a dissecting table where Holmes would "murder his victims and strip their skeletons to sell for medical and scientific study."
Graham Moore, who won an Academy Award earlier this year for The Imitation Game, wrote an early draft of the script, but now Billy Ray is taking over the writing duties. The screenwriter reportedly had a new take on the material that connected the two main characters, Holmes and the man he worked for, the "architect/producer" of the World's Fair, who didn't know his employee was a serial killer. The Devil in the White City will be the next project for both Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese, but it isn't known when production may begin.
This adaptation will be the sixth time Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese have worked with each other. They have previously collaborated on Gangs of New York, The Aviator, The Departed, Shutter Island and The Wolf of Wall Street. The actor and filmmaker will also serve as producers alongside Jennifer Davisson Killoran and Stacey Sher.
Leonardo DiCaprio will next be seen in The Revenant, which hits theaters on Christmas Day. We reported last month that the actor is also being sought to star in another hot adaptation, Don Winslow's The Cartel. Are you glad that Leonardo DiCaprio and Martin Scorsese are teaming up once again? Let us know what you think below.