Ben Affleck’s Argo arrives in theatres in the US today, promising to be a favourite amongst audiences who loved his first two films, and a strong contender in the awards season to come. The multi-hyphenate is turning his eye on what to go behind the camera for next, and he’s now in talks to adapt Live By Night, the latest novel by Dennis Lehane, Deadline report.
If all goes well, he will write, direct, produce, and star in the film, which would be the first time he’s done all four together.
Lehane is the author of Gone Baby Gone, the adaptation of which saw Affleck making his impressive directorial debut, nominated at the Oscars for Amy Ryan’s supporting role.
He also wrote Shutter Island, which Martin Scorsese adapted for the screen, with Leonardo DiCaprio in the lead.
Warner Bros. acquired Lehane’s latest novel for DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson Killoran’s Appian Way, who will now produce alongside Pearl Street, the production company Affleck shares with Matt Damon.
Courtesy of Waterstones, the synopsis looks a little like this:
“Joe Coughlin is nineteen when he meets Emma Gould. A smalltime thief in 1920s Boston, he is told to cuff her while his accomplices raid the casino she works for. But Joe falls in love with Emma – and his life changes for ever. That meeting is the beginning of Joe’s journey to becoming one of the nation’s most feared and respected gangsters. It is a journey beset by violence, double-crossing, drama and pain. And it is a journey into the soul of prohibition-era America…A powerful, deeply moving novel, Live By Night is a tour-de-force by Dennis Lehane, writer on The Wire and author of modern classics such as Shutter Island, Gone, Baby, Gone and The Given Day.”
Following Argo, Affleck will next be seen in Terrence Malick’s To the Wonder alongside Rachel McAdams, Olga Kurylenko, and Javier Bardem, which I would certainly recommend seeing next year, after catching it at TIFF.
After that, he has Runner, Runner on his slate for September 2013, and in talks to star as the male lead in Focus, penned by Crazy, Stupid, Love.’s Glenn Ficarra and John Requa.
Clearly, he’s showing no signs of slowing down, and it’s expected that he’ll develop Live by Night whilst acting in Focus.
Gone Baby Gone proved Affleck an incredibly talented director from the outset, and a return to Lehane’s fiction in Live By Night is definitely something to look forward to. More as we get it.