The Gunman is based on Jean-Patrick Manchette’s novel Prone Gunman, with a script by Peter Travis (Dredd 3D, Vantage Point). The project is fully funded by Studio Canal, and Silver Pictures’ Joel Silver and Andrew Rona are producing. Manchette’s writing has been described as in the French Noir genre, part existential, part political, and part exploring the human condition. Sounds like a good description of Sean Penn.
The Gunman is Martin Terrier (Sean Penn), an international operative who is betrayed by his organization and must go on the run in a relentless lethal battle for survival across Europe. Considering that the film is being directed by Pierre Morel (Taken), who introduced Liam Neeson to the lucrative action genre, The Gunman is being seen as a franchise potential for Sean Penn.
Last week CinemaBlend reported that Idris Elba would be joining Sean Penn and Oscar winner Javier Bardem in the film as a mysterious operative named Dupont. Elba will play a starring role in Guillermo del Toro’s Pacific Rim, due out this summer, and he reprises his role as Asgard protector Heimdall in Thor: The Dark World, due out this fall. Elba is creating Oscar buzz for his upcoming biopic, where he plays Nelson Mandela in the Long Walk To Freedom, due out in late December.
Now Deadline reports that tough-guy actor Ray Winstone (The Departed, Sexy Beast, and the upcoming Noah, with Russell Crowe), has joined the cast. He will play a mentor to Sean Penn’s hitman character. Jasmine Trinca (Miele), plays the films female lead.
Shooting begins next week. We’ll keep you posted on the progress.