Harry Houdini's Birthday Comes With A New Movie

Harry HoudiniIn what could prove to be his best illusion yet, Harry Houdini has managed to recreate himself... four times!

That's the magic of the movies, at least, where for every one idea for a film there are at least three other potential projects. Fittingly, today, on what would have been the masterful illusionist's 137th birthday, Variety reports that "Water for Elephants" director Francis Lawrence is in talks to direct a biopic about the life of Houdini for Sony Pictures. That would make for, yes, the fourth Houdini-related project currently in development.

Find out more information about each of the different projects after the jump.

Untitled Sony Houdini Film

Before Lawrence came into the picture, Paul Verhoeven was originally attached to direct Sony's film adaptation of Houdini's life. But now it appears that the "Water for Elephants" director is at the helm, with Lawrence said to be taking a "new approach" than what was previously intended.

"Voices From The Dead"

Last month we heard about the upcoming fictionalized tale of a friendship between Houdini and "Sherlock Holmes" creator Arthur Conan Doyle as they investigate a set of murders in 1920s New York. The screenplay was written by "Thor" scribe J. Michael Straczynski and is being shopped around Hollywood for a director and stars.

"The Secret Life Of Houdini

It's been two years (almost to the day) since we last wrote about Summit Entertainment's planned adaptation of William Kalush and Larry Sloman's controversial biography "The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America's First Superhero" as an action film. According to /Film, the project is still in the works with Noah Oppenheim writing a new draft from Jeff Nathanson's original version.

"Houdini" Broadway Musical

This might not be headed to the big screen, but we're still counting Aaron Sorkin and Danny Elfman's planned "Houdini" musical starring none other than Hugh Jackman as part of this Houdini frenzy. Last we heard, the musical would be premiering sometime in 2012, after Sorkin finishes the script and Elfman completes the score.

Are you excited about all these Houdini projects? Do you think they're a good 137th birthday present for him? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below or on Twitter!