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Australian director Garth Davis could be making his feature film debut with Shantaram, a former Johnny Depp project that was recently revived at Warner Bros. The Great Gatsby actor Joel Edgerton is now attached to star.
Deadline, which first reported the news, confirmed that Davis is in early talks with the studio to adapt the novel by Gregory David Roberts. Davis co-directed episodes of Sundance’s Top of the Lake, earning an Emmy nomination for his work. His sparse resume includes episodes of 2006’s Love My Way, the 2003 short Alice and the 2000 documentary P.I.N.S..
Shantaram is a critically acclaimed novel that Warner Bros. has reportedly had the rights to since 2004. Depp, who is still attached to produce through his Infinite Nihil banner, had hoped to star, but the project stalled. Another Australian director, the acclaimed Peter Weir, was set to direct at the time.
The sprawling novel centers on the mysterious Mr. Lindsay, who had escaped from an Australian prison and is a heroin addict. But the people of Bombay, who have nicknamed him “Shantaram,” know nothing about his past.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, which also confirmed that Davis is in talks, Eric Roth (Forrest Gump) wrote the most recent screenplay.