Johnny Depp’s production company Infinitium Nihil has signed a deal with Disney to develop projects based on the classic 1972 TV movie The Night Stalker and the 24 hours surrounding Paul Revere’s famous ride.
Depp would be the potential star for both projects and will also serve as a producer along with his Infinitum Nihil partner Christi Dembrowski.
For The Night Stalker, Depp would play tabloid reporter Carl Kolchak whose investigation into a series of murders discovers that they are the handiwork of a vampire. The original TV movie, starring Darren McGavin, proved such a ratings hit that ABC spun-off a weekly series also starring McGavin. Although the series only ran one season, it retained a a loyal cult following and X-Files creator Chris Carter has named the show as a big inspiration.
There are no writers attached to The Night Stalker yet, though it is expected that Disney will begin hearing pitches from writers soon.
Meanwhile, Batman Forever writers Lee and Janet Batchler are already at work on the untitled Paul Revere project, which would look at the Boston silversmith’s famous ride from Charlestown to Lexington to warn of an impending British attack.
Disney has been quite the earner for Disney. The Pirates Of The Caribbean series which he headlines has pulled in a little over #3.7 billion in worldwide box office. The studio’s 2010 version of Alice In Wonderland, which featured Depp as the Mad Hatter, sold $1 billion in tickets worldwide.
Depp has always made interesting choices of roles, even if the resultant film has not lived up to expectations. These two projects, as different as they are, I can see appealing to the actor. Hopefully, with him in a producer role as well, these two films will not disappoint.
When Depp will get around to making either of these projects remains to be seen. Currently Depp is shooting a big screen adaption of another cult television series Dark Shadows, with director Tim Burton and will be moving on to The Lone Ranger in the fall. He also has a potential fifth Pirates Of The Caribbean film and is currently being sought for the lead of Carter Beats The Devil.