‘Lady Macbeth’ Director To Helm Crime Film Based On ‘Eastern Promises 2’ Script | Film News
Lady Macbeth director William Oldroyd has signed on to helm the crime thriller Body Cross for Focus Features. The studio had reportedly been developing the project as a potential sequel to the 2007 crime film Eastern Promises, per Collider.
Steven Knight had written the script years ago, and Focus executives had been high on it for a while, but since then the script has stalled out as a potential sequel to Eastern Promises, mostly because that film hasn’t really remained in the cultural lexicon since it arrived eleven years ago. Thus, Focus is now developing it as an original story.
The film is described as a mafia tale about two immigrant brothers living in London. The protagonist is a Russian agent who rises to become a London mafia boss’ trusted right hand man and is soon instructed to assassinate one of his fellow countryman.
While the original script naturally contained the Eastern Promises characters played by Viggo Mortensen and Vincent Cassel, they have been written out of the film, with Mortensen’s Nikolai being tweaked and renamed Gregory.
Knight told Indiewire all the way back in 2014: “I can say the script for the second one is much better that the first. Honestly, it’s one of the things I’ve written that I most like and it’s driving me mad…so I’ve got to get it made”.
Knight’s recent credits include Allied, November Criminals and the upcoming Girl In The Spider’s Web, while he also created the series Peaky Blinders.
Oldroyd hasn’t made anything since Lady Macbeth, but that film made a star out of Florence Pugh, who has since signed on to big projects such as Greta Gerwig‘s Little Women, Ari Aster‘s Midsommer, and the upcoming limited series The Little Drummer Girl.
Rarely is a script altered from a sequel to an original project. If anything it’s far more likely to be the other way around, so it will be interesting to see how Body Cross works as a standalone film.
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