Ben Stiller recently received praise for his directing work on the Showtime limited series Escape From Dannemora, and he’s riding that wave to his next project, which is another dark one.
This one’s a crime film titled The Seven Five, and is based on Tiller Russell‘s 2014 documentary of the same name.
That film revolved around a corrupt NYPD precinct in the 1980s and its ringleader Michael Dowd, who was arrested in 1992 alongside other dirty cops who stole money and drugs. He served 14 years in prison, and his arrest exposed widespread corruption among the New York police force.
The film is in development at MGM, but a narrative version of the doc has actually been in the works for a while.
Back in 2014, Sony won the narrative remake rights and quickly attached director Yann Demange (’71, White Boy Rick) to the project, with Scott Frank (The Queen’s Gambit) on board to pen the script. However Frank ultimately proved too busy to do it.
Current MGM boss Michael De Luca was Sony’s president of production at the time, and was clearly fond of the project, and recently acquired it out of turnaround from Sony.
Stiller is reportedly working on the script with Tony McNamara (The Favourite), and Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Nicholas Hoult have been mentioned as possibilities to play Dowd, but those are just rumours right now.
Russell’s 2014 documentary was timely, and this narrative version might be even more so. We’ll wait and see what actors come on board.
Stiller remains busy as a director, producer and actor. He’s helming the Apple series Severance, which stars an impressive cast of Patricia Arquette, Adam Scott, John Turturro and Christopher Walken.
He’s also a producing a movie about former NBA star Bernard King, a documentary about writer Budd Schulberg, and the illegal coupon comedy Queenpins, which stars Kristen Bell and Vince Vaughn.
In front of the camera, Stiller will next be seen alongside Anne Hathaway in Doug Liman‘s pandemic-themed heist comedy Lockdown, which was recently acquired by HBO Max.