So would Jake Gyllenhaal or Matt Damon be the main contender for the lead role in "Torso" -- and what is that lead role? Both actors have been reported to be attached to the David Fincher film, an adaptation of Brian Michael Bendis and Marc Andreyko's graphic novel, but filmmakers have suggested that the film and the novel are very different beasts.
We caught up with the film's producer Bill Mechanic at a "Coraline" sneak peek in New York recently and he cleared up a few things.
"They didn't have the usual problems of adaptation, maybe because it's a graphic novel," Mechanic said. "We have an excellent script from Ehren Kruger," who also wrote "Arlington Road," "The Ring," and "Skeleton Key," "and it's the best thing he's written by far. Even the minor parts, there are places where real actors can score."
Mechanic said that the two best parts are "the guy who leads you through the story," and Elliot Ness. "It's less about the 'Torso Killer' than the nature of a hero and Elliot Ness," he said.
Could the square-jawed Damon be Ness then? Could Gyllenhaal be reprising his "Zodiac" fascination with the hunt for a serial killer as the story's narrator? "Some of those rumors are true," Mechanic said, "and some of those rumors are not true. But there are major people waiting to come aboard."
Part of their attraction to the project, Mechanic said, is because of Kruger's script -- "It's an Oscar-caliber script."
"The graphic novel doesn't give you the depth of character and things that make a movie work," Mechanic said. "And part of the idea of the movie, the initial interest from David was, pre-'Sin City' and '300,' was to bring a graphic novel to life. It's more about dimensionalizing that world, which means dimensionalizing the characters and the action so that it starts taking a life of its own. It's more of a self-standing piece. And Marc and Brian see it the same way Chuck Palahniuk spoke about 'Fight Club': 'It's great because I didn't want anything to do with it, it brings readers to my work, it's not usurping what I did. It's fairly different, but it's great.'"
Mechanic is waiting for the green light -- "we just need the studio to sign off," he said.
"I would hope we're shooting by spring," he said. "If it doesn't get made, it's a sin."
Pumped to hear that "Torso" is coming to the multiplex? Think Damon or Gyllenhaal would be good for the role of Elliot Ness? Let us know what you think.