Martin Scorsese is to return to the crime genre with The Snowman, an adaptation of the seventh book in Norwegian writer Jo Nesbø's series of novels about hardboiled Oslo detective Harry Hole.
Nesbø confirmed to a Swedish newspaper that Scorsese had signed on the dotted line. It's not known whether the film will be the Oscar-winner's follow-up to Hugo, his forthcoming 3D children's fantasy, or whether it will arrive at a later date.
The Snowman sees Nesbø's maverick cop investigating what appears to be Norway's first serial killer, a murderer who always leaves a snowman near the scene of his crime. The author came to prominence in Britain with the publication in 2006 of his Harry Hole novel The Redbreast. The Snowman, published here in 2010, and The Leopard, which followed this year, have cemented his reputation as one of the best of the current wave of Scandinavian writers, alongside Swedish authors such as Henning Mankell and Stieg Larsson, and his fellow Norwegian, Karin Fossum.
Nesbø reportedly had final choice of director for The Snowman and was happy to give his blessing to Scorsese. He will not insist on the film being set in Norway, raising the possibility that Scorsese might transfer the action to the US. Matthew Michael Carnahan, who wrote the upcoming Brad Pitt zombie flick World War Z as well as the script for the film version of State of Play, will work on the screenplay, with Working Title backing the production.
The Snowman will follow David Fincher's forthcoming Hollywood adaptation of Larsson's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, possibly the best known Scandinavian crime novel, into cinemas. The director of Se7en and Zodiac is choosing to retain the original novel's Swedish setting while employing a largely American and British cast alongside some Swedish actors.
Scorsese's Hugo, based on Brian Selznick's Caldecott medal-winning children's novel The Invention of Hugo Cabret, is due to arrive in cinemas on 23 November in the US and 2 December in the UK. It stars Asa Butterfield, Chloë Grace Moretz, Ben Kingsley, Sacha Baron Cohen, Ray Winstone, Emily Mortimer and Jude Law.
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