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Darren Aronofsky Eyes True Story Serial Killer Pic ‘The Good Nurse’

Darren Aronofsky Eyes True Story Serial Killer Pic 'The Good Nurse'

Update 12/12: Darren Aronofsky’s Protozoa Pictures is attached to produce “The Good Nurse,” however while the filmmaker will be the first to consider directing, he is not attached to do so at this time.

Perhaps we haven’t seen the last of Darren Aronofsky‘s “Noah.” With the film picking up a Golden Globe nomination this morning for Best Song for Patti Smith‘s “Mercy Is,” we wouldn’t be surprised if there is a little push in that category as Oscar ballots head out to voters. But what will the director be working on next? Well, over at HBO he’s developing Margaret Atwood‘s “MaddAddam,”  and he was one of the directors circling a hot sci-fi script from earlier this year, “Moonfall.” But another project has surfaced which could mark an interesting new direction for the filmmaker.

Revealed in the midst of The Tracking Board‘s 2014 The Hit List, Aronosfky’s is attached to direct “The Good Nurse,” with the movie set up at Lionsgate. Based on the book by Charles Graeber, and being adapted by Krysty Wilson-Cairns (whose sci-fi script “Aether” is getting some attention), it tells the shocking true story of a nurse who turned out to be one of the most deadly serial killers in history. Here’s the book synopsis: 

After his December 2003 arrest, registered nurse Charlie Cullen was quickly dubbed ‘The Angel of Death’ by the media. But Cullen was no mercy killer, nor was he a simple monster. He was a favourite son, husband, beloved father, best friend, and celebrated caregiver. Implicated in the deaths of as many as 300 patients, he was also perhaps the most prolific serial killer in American history. Cullen’s murderous career in the world’s most trusted profession spanned sixteen years and nine hospitals across New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Investigative journalist Charles Graeber’s portrait of Cullen depicts a surprisingly intelligent and complicated young man whose promising career was overwhelmed by his compulsion to kill, and whose shy demeanor masked a twisted interior life hidden even to his family and friends. Were it not for the hardboiled, unrelenting work of two former Newark homicide detectives racing to put together the pieces of Cullen’s professional past, and a fellow nurse willing to put everything at risk, including her job and the safety of her children, there’s no telling how many more lives could have been lost. In the tradition of In Cold Blood, The Good Nurse does more than chronicle Cullen’s deadly career and the breathless efforts to stop him; it paints an incredibly vivid portrait of madness and offers an urgent, terrifying tale of murder, friendship and betrayal.

A procedural in the hands of Aronofsky sounds compelling, particularly if coupled with the portrait of a madman, so consider us intrigued. Wilson-Cairns’ agency United Agents also confirms she’s penning the movie for Aronofsky, but it’s not clear if it will be his next project. But it’s definitely one with potential and promise, so we’ll keep our ear to the ground.

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Timothy Shanagher

This is not a "serial killer flick" but a true story of a murderous psychopath who took the life of not only my grandfather but also that of a possible FOUR HUNDRED others. Just remember that when typing meaningless critiques and comments.

Oliver Lyttelton

Try clicking the link that says United Agents in the last paragraph, where it says ‘Darren Aronofsky will direct.’


Nowhere does it say he’s attached to direct. It says she’s adapting it for him. That’s a major distinction. Do better journalism, Kevin.


A killer instinct just makes you feel so empty and evil inside. Imagine how colorless the lives are of those who naturally possess such an innate, corrosive drive; a drive that is forever unchangeable. They are just mediums of regressive darkness, and they will mercilessly suck even the best, most undeserving of people into that black hole with them. We must be so careful not to fall into such a gravitational field of darkness because it’s so difficult to get out and be who you once were. The guilt, remorse, emptiness and shame you feel for the things you said, did, or expressed because of all the instinctual, killer sharks around you is still your fault, and it is still your karma, even though falling to that place wasn’t your doing. And, yes, it’s so much extra work rebuilding yourself, but you just have to do it. If you can’t beat them – those ugly people – you still don’t have to join them, even if you fell into their darkness for a second, it’s okay when you know it’s wrong and make that effort to get out. It makes you smarter, and teaches you how to steer-clear of these vampires because you just don’t wanna go through the torturous rebuilding process again. A moment of darkness isn’t worth the price you have to pay for it. Anyway, I hope sentiments like that are endorsed in this serial killer flick.

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