Warner Bros. has a thing for crime pics and it's easy to see why. They got Oscar gold for "The Departed" and Ben Affleck's "The Town" was a surprising smash hit at the box office so no wonder they want to feed audience hunger for pics focusing on the seedy criminal underbelly. Ruben Fleischer's "Tales From The Gangster Squad" is already heating up with offers out to Sean Penn and Ryan Gosling and now another gangland pic is building steam.
"Cicero" was a project picked up last fall by the studio and it's pretty clear why it got the studio's attention. Written by Walon Green ("The Wild Bunch," "Sorcerer," "The Brink's Job"), and said to be in the vein of classic gangster pics like "The Public Enemy," "Little Caesar" and "Angels With Dirty Faces," the story focuses on Al Capone's rise to power moving from the slums of Brooklyn to the top of the food chain in prohibition-era Chicago. A pretty great story, but the first name being mentioned to potentially direct is a bit of a surprise.
David Yates, who has spent the last few years toiling away on the 'Harry Potter' franchise is being mentioned as a possible director with the film to be his his post 'Deathly Hallows' project. Of course, it's way early in the game but WB has clearly been very happy working with Yates on their lucrative franchise and now it looks like they want to reward him with a top tier pic.