Since his debut “Snow White & The Huntsman” was released last year (followed soon after by a certain controversy involving the filmmaker and his lead actress), director Rupert Sanders has flirted with a whole bunch of projects without necessarily committing to one. Tom Cruise vehicle ‘Van Helsing,” “Pirates of the Caribbean 5,“ Frederick Forsyth adaptation “The Kill List,” the space-set “The Juliet,” a project described as a “sci-fi ‘Battle of Algiers,‘—all have appeared on the trades, none have turned into anything concrete as yet.
Well, add one more to his dance card as Deadline report that Sanders is formally on board to helm “90 Church,” an adaptation of a true-crime tale that has a writer from a TV series that’s been much in the news in the last few days also along to write the script, in the shape of “Breaking Bad” writer/producer George Mastras. The project, set up at Universal, is based on the book by Agent Dean Unkefer, and involves the true story of the early years of the DEA, when it was initially known as the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, and the tough tactics used by its relatively few agents in the 1960s and 1970s.
Sanders actually mentioned the project in interviews last year without naming it, but it seems to be solidifying and Mastras—a former criminal investigator who wrote and directed “Breaking Bad’ season five highlight “Dead Freight” (which we picked as one of our favorite episodes last week—seems to be a good choice. Premise-wise, it seems worryingly close to a 1960s version of the abominable “Gangster Squad” but with any luck Mastras will elevate it, and Sanders will demonstrate that he’s not the empty stylist that ‘Huntsman’ suggested. No word when it might get before cameras, but with no script yet, there could be something else to come first for the director.