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Leonardo DiCaprio Sought For Ridley Scott’s ‘The Cartel’; Nic Pizzolatto Was Chasing The Project

Leonardo DiCaprio Sought For Ridley Scott's 'The Cartel'; Nic Pizzolatto Was Chasing The Project

Studios tend to be tight with cash for non-tentpole projects these days, which makes Fox‘s $6 million dollar spend on Don Winslow‘s drug thriller books “The Cartel” and “The Power Of The Dog,” with Ridley Scott attached to helm the former, all the more surprising. With that kind of money laid out already, it’s no wonder they are chasing a big star for the lead.

Deadline reports that Fox is courting Leonardo DiCaprio for the flick. He’s already starring in Fox’s “The Revenant” due later this year, starred in Scott’s “Body Of Lies” in 2008, and co-produced “Out Of The Furnace” with Scott in 2013. So, the relationships are there, and DiCaprio has made clear the importance of his working with top shelf filmmakers.

“[I’m] very much director-driven,” the actor recently told Grantland. “I really believe that filmmaking is a director’s medium. And although the screenplay, the character, is important as well, the execution of that screenplay can only be done in the hands of the right director…”

Shane Salerno will be penning the script for “The Cartel,” but things could’ve gone differently. HBO and “True Detective” creator Nic Pizzolatto were also chasing the project, with “’71” director Yann Demange also in the bid; alas, those didn’t pan out.

It seems there’s a lot of energy behind this one at the moment, and if DiCaprio lines it up on his schedule, there’s no doubt it’ll become a priority.

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