As reported over a year ago at Cannes and with a poster to prove it, there is a movie on its way about the manhunt for Saddam Hussein starring glittery vampire extraordinaire Robert Pattinson. Don’t worry, this isn’t some teen romantic drama infused with Middle Eastern political intrigue, it’s set to be a pretty gritty thriller with the semi-autobiographical novel “Mission: Blacklist #1″ as source material and a script written by “Band of Brothers” writer Erik Jendresen, “Dead Poets Society” actor Dylan Kussman, and relative unknown Trace Sheehan. The upcoming feature, “Mission: Blacklist” (no #1) follows military interrogator (and the novel’s co-author) Eric Maddox on the hunt for Hussein, ultimately leading him to the 6 to 8 foot spider hole in Ad-Dawr filled with the Iraqi dictator, two AK-47s, a pistol and $750,000 worth in $100 bills. Sounds pretty exciting, no?
With Pattinson as Maddox and a finished script, all seemed good to go until director Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire left the project last month. Fortunately (or unfortunately, jury’s still out with the film in pre-production), they’ve found a replacement in Jesper Ganslandt, whose last feature “Blondie” we weren’t particularly fond of at last year’s Venice Film Festival. “Mission: Blacklist #1” will mark the Swedish director’s English-language debut and his first thriller. This sounds like there could be a glimmer of Oscar bait (going down the “Zero Dark Thirty” route) or maybe it’s just another chance for Pattinson to boost up his acting cred or it could get stuck in the melee of pre-production mess. As it’s still in the early stages, there’s plenty of time to speculate and feel free to in the comment section below. [Deadline]