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Donnie Darko director Richard Kelly to helm Nicolas Cage in crazy true-crime story

09.27.2012

Richard Kelly and Nicolas Cage

First Richard Kelly did the divisive DONNIE DARKO, then he did the even more divisive SOUTHLAND TALES, and then he did THE BOXTHE BOX was bad.  Really bad.  Even the combined might of James Marsden's charm and Frank Langella's charred face couldn't save it.  So it is with very cautious interest that I bring you this news: Richard Kelly is teaming up with Nicholas Cage for a very strange, yet precedent-setting, true-crime story called AMICUS.  

Here's the history: spanning 25 years, [AMICUS] is based on the true story of Lawrence Horn, a former record producer and Motown Records exec who is currently serving a life sentence in prison for hiring Detroit-based hit man James Perry to murder his wife, quadriplegic son and the wealthy family's overnight nurse at their suburban home in Silver Spring, Maryland. Horn's son was the victim of medical malpractice and as the result of a subsequent lawsuit, had a trust worth nearly $2 million, which his father stood to inherit in the wake of his death.  Detectives discovered that Perry, who was sentenced to death in 1995 for the brutal crime, used how-to book "Hit Man: A Technical Manual for Independent Contractors" as a guide to execute the murders. The families of the victims went on to file a class-action lawsuit against the Colorado-based publisher Paladin Press.  The attorneys representing the families then hired Smolla, a First Amendment attorney and professor at William & Mary Law School, to consult on the historic case, which took five years to settle amidst a series of shocking and bizarre developments.

Cage is set to play Smolla, and I'm very curious to see which cage we're going to get for this - "mega-acting" Cage, so-restrained-he's-practically-dead Cage, or the medium between those two that's actually fascinating to watch.  Kelly's next was originally meant to be CORPUS CHRISTI with Edgar Ramirez, but there's been no movement on that project since Ramirez's attachment and production seems to have been stalled in favor of AMICUS.  The Cage-Kelly team-up is already gearing up for a January start date in Atlanta, so hopefully we'll hear more on the casting side of things soon.

Vanessa Hudgens in black lingerie on bed

Cage's FROZEN GROUND co-star Vanessa Hudgens

Extra Tidbit: Amicus (noun): /əˈmēkəs/ An impartial adviser, often voluntary, to a court of law in a particular case.
Source: Variety

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