It’s clearly Gangster Day at Warner Bros. And by that we don’t mean the staff are running around waving imaginary Tommy Guns or that the marketing team is sending members of the cafeteria staff to the morgue (that’s the Chicago way, after all). No, the studio is flashing the green light for LA-set thriller Gangster Squad and looking to make a film about the early years of crime legend Al Capone.
After a long search for the right director, Warners set Zombieland director Ruben Fleischer to make the movie about LA mobster Mickey Cohen and the crack team of cops that was formed to take him down.
According to Deadline, the studio is now after Sean Penn to play Cohen, an ex-boxer who palled around in the 1940s with the likes of Meyer Lansky and Bugsy Siegel and who liked to be seen as a man about town with a girl on his arm. But he was also a capricious sort with a violent temper.
No wonder the LAPD wanted to take him down – and if the company has its way, Ryan Gosling will be playing one of the law enforcement types looking to stop his reign of pleasure/terror. Ex-cop Will Beall adapted the script from a series of LA Times articles by Paul Lieberman.
And Cohen is not the only mobster who may get the movie treatment, though Al Capone has been in the spotlight before. Warners is now looking at Walon Green’s Cicero, which chronicles his formative years, which Harry Potter veteran David Yates may direct once he’s finished work on the final Hogwarts adventure. No firm offers are out to either actor on Gangster Squad or Yates for Cicero, so these are lingering strictly under the flashing neon rumour sign for now…