Michael Roskam Shelters Animal Rescue

He'll adopt the Dennis Lehane script

It’s all change on the directing front for Dennis Lehane short story adaptation Animal Rescue. Neil Burger adopted the script in June, but now, having committed to looking after dystopian teen novel pic Divergent, he’s handing off the Lehane project to Bullhead’s Michael R. Roskam to raise as his very own.

Lehane himself adapted the script, which finds a lonely Boston bar owner rescuing a puppy from a rubbish bin. Unfortunately for him, that then makes him the target of the dog’s unstable former owner.

Added to that, he also gets wrapped up in a criminal conspiracy that swirls around his bar. He shouldn’t be all that surprised, though: the watering hole is controlled by the mob, after all…

Fox Searchlight and Chernin Entertainment are backing this one, and the producers have already offered the lead to Tom Hardy. There’s no word yet on whether the in-demand actor will actually lock in a deal.

Roskam, who seems like a good fit for the film after his success with crime drama in the past, is also juggling a few other projects, including an HBO pilot and The Tiger, which was adapted by Babel’s Guillermo Arriaga from John Valliant’s book. It remains to be seen which film wins his heart, but if he does get Hardy for Rescue, chances are that will leap to the top of his To Do list.