By Drew Taylor | The Playlist November 19, 2013 at 8:15PM
When we last reported on "El Presidente," the high-concept buddy movie about a clean cut Secret Service agent and the disheveled, alcoholic schlub of an ex-president he's assigned to protect, Tom Cruise was loosely attached, as was "Recount" director Jay Roach, with Robert Downey, Jr. being eyed for the pivotal role of the ex-prez. Well, it looks like Cruise held onto the project and has brought aboard his "Edge of Tomorrow" director Doug Liman to helm the project. And what's more, the two are making a bid to get an even bigger name for the role of the former commander-in-chief: Jack Nicholson.
According to a Hollywood Reporter report, Liman and Cruise have made a "last ditch effort" to court Nicholson, with the pair visiting Nicholson's home last week and Cruise telling his "Few Good Men" costar that "he won't do the movie without him." Sure, Tom.
While Nicholson, who has become increasingly picky and was last seen in 2010's barely watchable James L. Brooks romantic comedy "How Do You Know," didn't sign on to the film, he did agree to read the script, which was written by Jesse Armstrong and Daniel J. Goor with a rewrite courtesy of Paul Attanasio (writer of such hilarious movies as "Quiz Show" and "Sphere").
The same Hollywood Reporter piece notes that "El Presidente" "follows straight-arrow Secret Service agent who is assigned to protect America's worst former president, an alcoholic and womanizing sleaze bag who never won a presidential election but was elevated from VP when the president died. When a threat is made on the ex-president’s life, the duo must go on the run." Sounds pretty great to us.
Hopefully Nicholson will sign on to the project; Nicholson and Cruise have shown obvious chemistry in "A Few Good Men" and it would be nice to see Liman return to the more comedic arena of his earlier films like "Swingers" and "Go." It also bodes well for "Edge of Tomorrow," the formerly-titled "All You Need is Kill," which is also being released by Warner Bros. (it'll be out next summer).