EXCLUSIVE: Open Road Films has acquired North American rights to Marlowe, a noir crime thriller that stars Liam Neeson atop an ensemble that includes Diane Kruger, Jessica Lange, Danny Huston, Alan Cumming, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Ian Hart, Colm Meaney, Daniela Melchior and Francois Arnaud. Neil Jordan directed the film from script by The Departed’s William Monahan. The film will be released theatrically December 2 through Open Road/Briarcliff Entertainment.
In what is Neeson’s 100th film, the star plays detective Philip Marlowe, the protagonist from the hardboiled Raymond Chandler mysteries that included The Big Sleep, Farewell My Lovely and The Long Goodbye. This one is based on author John Banville’s book The Black-Eyed Blonde, an original novel authorized by the Raymond Chandler estate. The action is set in late 1930’s Bay City, centering around the brooding, down on his luck detective Marlowe. He’s hired to find the ex-lover of a glamorous heiress (Kruger), daughter of a well-known movie star (Lange). The disappearance is the first twist in a series of bewildering events, and soon Marlowe is embroiled in a deadly investigation and web of lies he’s determined to bring to light.
Open Road/Briarcliff Entertainment CEO Tom Ortenberg made the deal and confirmed it to Deadline.
Ortenberg said he is “very excited to continue working with Liam Neeson on Marlowe and celebrate his 100th movie with him. It’s the type of film we love to be part of: an incredible cast, an Oscar-winning writer and director, and a gripping story that audiences are going to love.”
In re-teaming with Neeson, Jordan said he “can’t imagine Marlowe without Liam Neeson. But then, I can’t imagine Michael Collins without him either. Maybe you need an icon to play an icon — that said, I couldn’t feel more honored to be teaming with Liam on his 100th movie, a project we’re all incredibly proud of.”
Marlowe is produced by Alan Moloney at Parallel Films, Gary Levinsohn and Billy Hines at H2L Media Group, Mark Fasano at Nickel City Pictures, and Philip Kim and Patrick Hibler at Storyboard Media. The project was developed by Parallel Films along with H2L and Nickel City in association with Screen Ireland.
The deal was negotiated by Ortenberg, Jessica Rose and Matthew Sidari on behalf of Open Road Films and by CAA and Elisabeth Costa de Beauregard of Storyboard Media on behalf of the filmmakers.
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