By Simon Dang | The Playlist January 20, 2011 at 1:55AM
The director of the acclaimed rockumentary "Anvil! The Story Of Anvil" Sacha Gervasi is reportedly in talks with Ivan Reitman's Montecito Pictures to take helm of their long-gestating Alfred Hitchcock biopic, based on the novel "Alfred Hitchcock And The Making Of 'Psycho'" by Stephen Rebello.
As the title suggests, the story chronicles the making of the English director's iconic film evidently exploring everything from "the actual crimes upon which Robert Bloch's novel was based [to] the film's production, its subsequent reception, and, briefly, the later films inspired by 'Psycho'" with one many revelations being that the film "was a departure for the 'North by Northwest' director, a more explicitly shocking film that was meant to compete with other low-budget horror pictures." Certainly a unique spin on a "Hitchcock biopic" but, more importantly, a take on the story that sounds like it would definitely suit writer-director-documentarian-former journalist Gervasi.
An earlier iteration of the adaptation had Ryan Murphy ("Running With Scissors," "Glee") at the helm with Anthony Hopkins loosely attached, a casting choice we still think is an inspired one, and Helen Mirren linked to the role of Hitchcock's wife and regular collaborator, Alma Reville. Hopkins has previously described the beginning of Murphy's take on the film as follows:
"It starts off in a Wisconsin field with the man Gein [the inspiration for Norman Bates] -- the man who killed his own brother and kept his mother's body in the closet -- it starts off these two brothers digging in the soil around this place on the farm, and one says to the Geins guy, 'You're just a mommy's boy.' And suddenly this shovel hits him on the back of the head, BANG, and kills him. The camera pans to Hitchcock standing there in the middle of the field having a cup of tea, 'Good evening. I hope you didn't miss that shot. Without that we wouldn't have a film.' And that's how it starts."
Of course, that was when Murphy was at the helm and, with the script having gone through drafts by the novel's author Rebello as well as "Black Swan" writer John McLaughlin (whose version scored a place on the 2007 Black List) so we're not sure what Gervasi's plans are. The director also has his writing and directing gig for the Herve Villechaize biopic "My Dinner With Herve" which is set, or intended, to star Peter Dinklage. Little, however, has been heard about that project in some time.