EXCLUSIVE: Warner Bros is making a deal with Guy Ritchie and his new partner Lionel Wigram to come aboard The Man From U.N.C.L.E., the film that Steven Soderbergh left just recently over budget and difficulty with casting after George Clooney dropped out. Based on the classic TV show, the film has a script by Scott Z. Burns. Ritchie and Wigram are forming a shingle together after making the Sherlock Holmes films. The intention is for Ritchie to direct the film.
This would be the first project under the new shingle for the British director and producer, who open Sherlock Holmes: Game Of Shadows on December 16. The film premieres in the UK tonight.
Soderbergh has set his sights on The Bitter Pill, a thriller that Summit will put into production next year, after this week closing a deal that calls for a green light commitment on the Burns-scripted thriller.
You could practically feel Steven Soderbergh’s The Man From UNCLE losing its mojo after his former partner George Clooney bowed out in August because the actor’s getting surgery and wasn’t up for the stunts. Sure enough, Soderbergh has dropped out of the project because he and Warner Bros couldn’t agree on budget. Soderbergh, who’s coming off the hit Contagion and whose action film Haywire is creating buzz, is expected to set a movie to fill that slot by Thanksgiving. He’s got a long relationship with the studio–which signed on to direct his male stripper pic Magic Mike–and this wasn’t particularly acrimonious or the kind of setback that would drive someone into retirement. He flirted with a number of actors, but it never quite came together.
EXCLUSIVE: Steven Soderbergh, who just directed Channing Tatum in Magic Mike, is eyeing him for the lead in The Man From U.N.C.L.E., I’m told. Both of those films are at Warner Bros. Soderbergh has been looking for an actor to replace George Clooney, who bowed out because he’s having surgery and wasn’t up to the stunt work. That shouldn’t be a problem for Tatum. No offer yet, but let’s see how this plays out.