It felt inevitable. Jonah Hill and Leonardo DiCaprio seemed to really hit it off on Martin Scorsese’s “The Wolf Of Wall Street.” In countless interviews Hill regaled journos with stories of working with DiCaprio (and how they messed with each other on set physically, especially during drug sequences), but for all their jokes and gags, the feeling of respect seemed very mutual. “Jonah Hill is probably one of the greatest improvisers I’ve ever worked with. He’s completely fearless standing in front of a group of people, coming up with incredibly spontaneous, brilliant dialogue,” DiCaprio told the WSJ said of his co-star.
That’s pretty damn good praise, but then again as a two-time Oscar nominee Hill may have earned it and then some. Then the more seemingly serious DiCaprio was game to take the piss out of himself on SNL when Hill recently hosted. The mutual admiration society continued.
And now they’re back at it, planning a re-team. 20th Century Fox has closed a deal for the rights to the Vanity Fair article, “American Nightmare: The Ballad Of Richard Jewell” about a national hero falsely vilified as the bomber in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
From VF’s lede: On July 30, 1996, the media identified Richard Jewell as the F.B.I.’s prime suspect in the Olympic Park bombing. For the first time, the 34-year-old security guard tells his extraordinary story: his brief moment as a national hero, his hounding by the Feds and the press, and his eccentric friendship with the unknown southern lawyer who helped him through his public torment.
Hill is set to play Richard Jewell and DiCaprio will play the aforementioned Southern lawyer. There sounds like a lot less comedy in this one and a lot more drama and it’s a testament to the Scorsese muse’s belief in the younger Hill that he thinks this material is right for his co-star. For Hill, the actor just keeps living the dream as the luckiest 30 year old on the planet. No word on a director yet, but it’s an extremely tantalizing prospect if it’s a real project and not something just announced during Oscar season to continue the nominees heat and keep them alive in the media (which unfortunately does happen). Until more news, check out ESPN‘s “30 For 30” documentary on the story below. [Deadline]