EXCLUSIVE: Relativity Studios has set its sights on Jack Huston to play the lead character in the Corin Hardy-directed remake of The Crow. Talks are in the early stage. This is the second coveted job Huston has been chased to do since his standout portrayal as the masked, war-scarred assassin Richard Harrow on HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. Huston right now is starring in the other, playing the lead role in Ben-Hur, the massive pic inspired by the 1959 William Wyler-directed classic that starred Charlton Heston. The adaptation of the 1880 Lew Wallace novel is being directed by Timur Bekmambetov for MGM and Paramount.

jack huston bigThe Crow, a remake of the 1994 Alex Proyas-directed adaptation of the James O’Barr graphic novel about a murdered man who comes back for revenge, has taken on its own pedigree of cool because of the emergence of its director Hardy. He helmed the animated short Butterfly and directed vids for Ed Sheeran and others. He made his live-action feature directing debut on The Hallow, the thriller which got acquired at Sundance. Huston is being courted for the role originated by Brandon Lee. Edward R. Pressman is producing with Kevin Misher, Relativity’s Ryan Kavanaugh, Jeff Most — who produced the original with Pressman — and Jeff Waxman. Tucker Tooley, Bob and Harvey Weinstein and Dan Farah are exec producers.

The Cliff Dorfman-scripted pic will go into production in the spring. I am not sure Huston will make the deal, but they want him and signs are looking good. Stay tuned. Huston is fast rising. He’s playing Wickham in the Burr Steers-directed adaptation of Seth Grahame-Smith’s Pride And Prejudice And Zombies, alongside Lily James, Sam Riley and Bella Heathcote. Huston wrapped the George Tillman-directed Fox 2000 adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’ The Longest Ride for Temple Hill partners Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey, and he scored in a West End production of Strangers On A Train and was in American Hustle. Huston is repped by UTA, Untitled, The Artists Partnership and attorney Alex Kohner.