Downey and Burton's 'Pinocchio' Finds Writer, Derrickson to Adapt 'Deus Ex' and Weinsteins Brew a Starbucks Movie

Tim Burton and Robert Downey Jr. are doing Pinocchio

1.) Jane Goldman, known for co-writing Kick-Ass and X-Men: First Class, is in talks to write a live-action version of Pinocchio, which would be directed by Tim Burton and star Robert Downey, Jr. An initial draft of the script was written by Bryan Fuller ("Pushing Daisies"). The Warner Bros. project would star Downey as Geppetto, the woodcarver who creates a Pinocchio. When the puppet goes missing, Geppetto goes on a journey to find him. So while the initial logline sounds just like the classic Disney tale, I'm sure the involved talent will make it anything but. [THR]

2.) Scoot McNairy's career has understandably taken off since starring in the well-reviewed cheapie Monsters in 2010. He can now be seen in Argo and will also appear in Killing Them Softly and Gus Van Sant's Promised Land in the coming months. He picked up another big role this week, this one coming in The Rover, an existentialist western set in a dystopian near future. The film is David Michod's follow-up to the excellent Animal Kingdom, which also stars the previously cast Robert Pattinson and Guy Pearce. Michod will shoot the film in Australia in January. [Deadline]

3.) As if I wasn't already excited enough for The Dallas Buyer's Club, today brings set photos of Jared Leto in drag and news that Steve Zahn has joined the cast. Dallas Roberts (The Grey, Shrink) has also joined the cast. Based on a true story, the film stars Matthew McConaughey, who has reportedly lost at least 30 pounds to play a 1980s electrician diagnosed with AIDS. With the help of a cross-dressing fellow AIDS victim (Leto), he smuggles drugs into the U.S., prolonging the lives of himself and other patients. [E!Online, Variety]

4.) I have no idea what Deus Ex is, but people seem pretty excited about the news that Scott Derrickson (Sinister) is going to direct an adaptation of the video game for CBS Films. Derrickson will write the screenplay with his Sinister co-writer C. Robert Cargill. The film will most closely follow the newest game in the series, Deus Ex: Human Renaissance, which serves as a prequel to the original game. The story is set in the near future, when advances in human augmentation have triggered a technological renaissance. It follows an ex-SWAT security specialist who must embrace mechanical augments in order to unravel a global conspiracy.

This is now the second project Derrickson has picked up this week, following the Eric Bana-led paranormal police thriller Beware the Night.

5.) A Starbucks movie is brewing over at the Weinstein Company. Originally acquired by Universal as a vehicle for Gus Van Sant and Tom Hanks in 2007, Michael Gates Gill's book How Starbucks Saved My Life is now in the hands of TWC. The memoir reveals how the 50-something author regained his mojo while working as a barista after suffering a professional fall from grace, a divorce and a brain tumor. No word yet on who might direct or star in the film. [Deadline]

  • Carni

    unlike most video game adaptions, the Deus Ex series makes a lot of sense. It's a very Noir-ish take on a the near future, and is very cinematic. All the games in the series had rich, detailed espionage plotlines. In the hands of a good screenwriter (to create memorable characters, as that's the one thing the game series was missing), and a good director, this could be very good indeed. And while I haven't seen Sinister, I have seen the Day the Earth Stood Still remake, which Scott Derrickson also made. And I was not impressed. Nonetheless, I'll be keeping my eyes on this movie as it's in development.

    • Seiko

      Scott Derrickson also made "Exorcism of Emily Rose," as well as "Hellraiser: Inferno," and has other writing/producing credits. I can see him handling the creepy, darker aspects of the game. The only reason why anyone might worry a little is the grand scale.

      Then again, "Day Of The Earth Still" wasn't originally (what it was remaking) meant to be nothing but a special effects fest, but Dues Ex could use this effort put into what exists. So it could be pretty good, I'll still be watching anyway...

  • Badge

    Next up: Tim Burton's 'Sleeping Beauty'. Tim Burton's 'Peter Pan'. Tim Burton's 'Dumbo'. Tim Burton's slippery slide down the Disney slope to hell.

  • Gloria Huffman

    This was my opinion of the old white guy's Starbucks riches-to-rags story in 2007 (it's still my opinion on 2/18/2013!):