Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Watch: First Trailer For Tim Burton's 'Big  Eyes' Starring Amy Adams And Christoph Waltz Watch: First Trailer For Tim Burton's 'Big Eyes' Starring Amy Adams And Christoph Waltz 'Deadpool’ Spin-Off With Ryan Reynolds Is Finally Green Lit, Set For A Winter 2016 Release Date 'Deadpool’ Spin-Off With Ryan Reynolds Is Finally Green Lit, Set For A Winter 2016 Release Date 10 Films We Haven’t Yet Seen That May Be Serious Oscar Contenders 10 Films We Haven’t Yet Seen That May Be Serious Oscar Contenders David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' David Fincher Says He Shouldn't Have Directed 'The Game,' Dislikes Superhero Movies & Talks "Crazy" '20,000 Leagues' Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series Matt Damon & Paul Greengrass Are Returning To The 'Bourne' Series First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' First Look: Angelina Jolie And Brad Pitt In 'By The Sea' The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival The Best, Worst And Most Disappointing Films Of The 2014 Toronto International Film Festival David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' David Fincher Says Differences Over Casting And Disney's Corporate Culture Stalled '20,000 Leagues Under The Sea' Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 2 ‘The Good Listener’ Recap: 'Boardwalk Empire' Season 5, Episode 2 ‘The Good Listener’ Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Review: 'No Good Deed' Starring Idris Elba and Taraji P. Henson Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics Watch: Shailene Woodley Gets NSFW In 2 Clips From 'White Bird In A Blizzard' Plus New Pics TIFF Review: 'Cake' Starring Jennifer Aniston, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington & More TIFF Review: 'Cake' Starring Jennifer Aniston, Anna Kendrick, Sam Worthington & More Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' Tom Hardy Says He'll Never Do Another Romantic Comedy Again Thanks To 'This Means War' David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made David Fincher Apparently Thinks 'Dragon Tattoo' Sequel 'The Girl Who Played With Fire' Could Get Made The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The Best Documentaries Of 2014 So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... The Best Films Of 2014 So Far... From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki From Worst To Best: Ranking The Films Of Hayao Miyazaki The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes The 10 Best & Worst Movie Sex Scenes All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More

Dreamworks Acquires 'Voices From The Dead,' Spec Script About Houdini and Conan Doyle

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com February 10, 2011 at 3:20AM

With two critically and commercially successful reboots appearing in the past few years, in the form of Guy Ritchie's big-screen actioner and the BBC's superior contemporary reboot, Sherlock Holmes is very much back on the agenda. But his creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, has held almost as much fascination to filmmakers in recent years as the great detective himself: Doyle's appeared as a character, often in some kind of investigatory role, in the last decade in films like "Finding Neverland," "Shanghai Knights" and on the BBC mystery show "Murder Rooms," and now we look to be heading towards one more take that suggests that the writer didn't just leave the detecting to his creation.
0


With two critically and commercially successful reboots appearing in the past few years, in the form of Guy Ritchie's big-screen actioner and the BBC's superior contemporary reboot, Sherlock Holmes is very much back on the agenda. But his creator, Arthur Conan Doyle, has held almost as much fascination to filmmakers in recent years as the great detective himself: Doyle's appeared as a character, often in some kind of investigatory role, in the last decade in films like "Finding Neverland," "Shanghai Knights" and on the BBC mystery show "Murder Rooms," and now we look to be heading towards one more take that suggests that the writer didn't just leave the detecting to his creation.

DreamWorks has picked up a spec script from "Changeling" writer J. Michael Straczynski entitled "Voices From The Dead," which focuses on the real-life friendship between Conan Doyle and legendary illusionist Harry Houdini. The plot, set in the 1920s, will feature the two teaming with a psychic to solve a series of murders in New York City. It's also likely to delve into the arguments the pair had about the supernatural: Houdini was a skeptic, and often used his show to debunk so-called psychics, while Conan Doyle wrote in his book "The Edge of the Unknown" that the magician had actual psychic powers.

Straczynski's become a fairly hot screenwriter in recent years. He came to fame as the creator of cult sci-fi show "Babylon 5," and has been on a number of high-profile projects in the past, including "World War Z," "Silver Surfer," "Forbidden Planet," "Shattered Union" and Vietnam pic "They Marched Into Sunlight," although neither of his produced projects, Clint Eastwood's "Changeling" and James McTeague's "Ninja Assassin," have been particularly good, or indeed any good at all.

Nevertheless, the project could be interesting, if it keeps this side of the ridiculous, and seems to tie into a current trend of literary detectives: Edgar Allan Poe, for instance, is the lead in both "The Raven," where John Cusack plays the author on the trail of a serial killer, and "Poe," a new period procedural that's just gone to pilot at ABC. No cast or director are yet attached to "Voices From The Dead," but we're sure more news will follow soon. [Heat Vision]

This article is related to: Films, Voices From The Dead, J. Michael Straczynski


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates