Most everyone can agree that The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable are the two best films on writer/director M. Night Shyamalan’s filmography. And a big part of their success can possibly be attributed to the work of actor Bruce Willis in the lead roles for each film. Although known for a succession of wisecracking characters, Willis’ work in The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable were departures, with the actor presenting far more contemplative and complex protagonists than he usually played. With Shyamalan’s more recent films disappointing audiences more than entertaining them, can we take it as a good sign that Shyamalan is currently shopping a project around Hollywood that would reteam the two?
The Hollywood Reporter‘s Heat Vision blog is reporting that the Philadelphia-based Shyamalan has a new, untitled script currently making the rounds of movie studio executive suites in Los Angeles. As has become the norm when he begins shopping a new script, Shyamalan insists on almost ridiculous security. An assistant to the director shows up at an executives with a copy of the script, hands it over to be read and then waits until the exec finishes it and then takes it back.
Needless to say, no one knows or is talking about what the script could be about. It is supposedly strong enough to not only get Willis interested in attaching his name to the project but Bradley Cooper and Gwyneth Paltrow as well.
I am honestly a bit surprised that Shyamalan is able to insist and have honored his security conditions for reading this new script. His last three films – The Village, Lady In The Water and The Happening – were all disappointments on both critical and box office levels. I would think that he doesn’t have the clout in Hollywood that he had back at the turn of the century when The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable were released.
It probably won’t be until after the July 4th weekend and everyone gets a look at the opening box office receipts for Shyamalan’s The Last Airbender before we hear if any studio puts out an offer for this script. Will a bidding war be sparked or will the director have to take whatever deal is offered?