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The Black List: Where Are The Top Scripts Of Previous Years Now?

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | www.oliverlyttelton.com December 17, 2012 at 4:01PM

One of the cannier inventions of the movie world in the last decade or so is The Black List, set up by Franklin Leonard, at the time an junior executive at Leonardo DiCaprio's Appian Way company. Appropriating one of Hollywood's greatest shames (the banning from work of professionals -- mostly screenwriters -- with communist leanings) for good, with the intention of highlighting the best unmade scripts from Hollywood, Leonard polled executives for the best things they'd read that year, launching the first list in 2005.
4

2010

Tom Cruise All You Need Is Kill, Edge Of Tomorrow
1. "College Republicans" - Wes Jones
A comedy about the frat years of Karl Rove and Lee Atwater, this was set to be directed by Richard Linklater, with first Shia LaBeouf, and then Paul Dano, attached to play Rove. It didn't progress, though, and LInklater hinted earlier in the year that he, at least, was less interested in the film than he was before.

2. "Jackie" - Noah Oppenheim
A biopic of Jacqueline BouvierKennedy/Onassis, focusing on the immediate aftermath of JFK's death, by former news show staffer Noah Oppenheim, "Jackie" initially attracted to the attention of HBO and Steven Spielberg, before Darren Aronofsky considered making it his next film after "Black Swan," and bringing in his wife Rachel Weisz to star. As their relationship fell apart, so did the film, but it got a new lease of life recently as Natalie Portman was offered the title role, though no director is currently attached.

3. "All You Need Is Kill" - Dante Harper
A "Groundhog Day"-style sci-fi actioner about an endlessly-reincarnating solider in an alien war, this has been a high-priority project at Warners for a while. Sam Raimi was among those considered to direct before Doug Liman got the job, and then Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling were courted for the lead until Tom Cruise signed on. Emily Blunt, Charlotte Riley and Bill Paxton joined him, shooting's underway now, and it'll hit theaters on March 14th 2014.

Stoker Nicole Kidman Mia Wasikowska
4. "Safe House" - David Guggenheim
This spy actioner starring Denzel Washington and Ryan Reynolds was a bit hit for Universal earlier in the year, and a sequel is now in development, with Guggenheim again writing the script

5. "Stoker" - Wentworth Miller
At one point looking likely to star Carey Mulligan, Colin Firth and Jodie Foster, this Hitchcockian melodrama now has Mia Wasikowska, Matthew Goode and Nicole Kidman, and marks the English-language debut of the great Park Chan-Wook. It premieres at Sundance in January, and it looks fucking awesome.

6. "Triple Nine" - Matt Cook
A hard boiled cop-thriller about a group of crooked officers planning a heist, who plan to shoot a fellow officer as part of their plan, this swiftly attracted the attention of John Hillcoat, who hoped to use it as a way to reteam with Shia LaBoeuf. Chris Pine and Jeff Bridges were loosely involved at one stage, but all three have fallen off, LaBeouf most recently. Still, Hillcoat told us recently he's hoping to shoot the film in the spring, so casting should be forthcoming.

Margin Call
7. "Margin Call" - J.C. Chandor
A drama set against the backdrop of financial collapse, this was one of the big hits of Sundance 2011, thanks to an ensemble cast including Zachary Quinto, Kevin Spacey, Jeremy Irons and more. Chandor, who also directed, won a Oscar nomination for the script, and is following it up with survival drama "All Is Lost" starring Robert Redford

8. "American Bullshit" - Eric Warren Singer
Based on a true story of a conman hired to head up an investigation into congressional corruption, this was considered by Ben Affleck before he took on "Argo," but ended up as a David O. Russell joint; the film shoots early next year with Christian Bale, Bradley Cooper, Amy Adams and Jeremy Renner all involved. Read what Russell told us about the project here.

9. "Argo" - Chris Terrio
Instead of "American Bullshit," Affleck directed and starred in this, and as you might have noticed, it picked up rave reviews, made $100 million at the box office, and could win Terrio an Oscar.

10. "The Last Son Of Isaac Lemay" - Greg Johnson
A Western about an outlaw trying to wipe out all his descendants, this curious-sounding script is set up at Gore Verbinski's production company Blind Wink, but no other details have emerged on either the script or Johnson in the intervening couple of years.

This article is related to: Features, Black List


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