According to The Hollywood Reporter, three of Hollywood's leadingest leading men – Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire, and Tom Hardy – are joining forces to produce a movie about animal trafficking. The drama is set up at Warner Bros. and a search for a screenwriter has already begun. The report states that it's not clear if any (or all) of the actors will appear in the final film, which is being described as a "Traffic"-like take on poaching and illegal animal smuggling.
The trade report states that Hardy came up with the idea, at least partially "inspired by friends who are former Special Forces operatives and went on to become anti-poacher fighters in South Africa and other nations." It will supposedly cover everything from "the ground war on poacher in the African savannah to how animal material ends up in the fashion houses of Paris." The scale seems to be global and multilayered and the "Traffic" comparisons are easy to make, at least at this early stage.
DiCaprio and Maguire are longtime buds but have rarely worked together (although the two share the screen in Baz Luhrmann's recently delayed "The Great Gatsby," now headed into eye-popping 3D cinemas next summer) and, as THR notes, DiCaprio is a longtime (and outspoken) animal-rights activist. Hardy, after making a splash in "The Dark Knight Rises" (and this week's wonderful "Lawless") is also making considerable inroads as a producer as well, having set up an untitled biker project at Warner Bros. (DiCaprio's Appian Way production shingle is set up at Warner Bros.)
While it might not be the most recognizable source for drama, the illegal animal trade is a fascinating subject that could provide some for some truly thrilling (and illuminating) entertainment. We recommend reading Jessica Speart's "Winged Obsession: The Pursuit of the World's Most Notorious Butterfly Smuggler," from last year, for just a tiny taste of the kind of intrigue and illegality goes along with smuggling animals. It's fascinating, hilarious, outrageous stuff and will probably give you a good taste of both the mood and the world that DiCpario, Maguire, and Hardy's tale will also try and capture.
Since this seems to be in an embryonic state as of now, no release date or anything else has been established.