Ridley Scott Talks The Counsellor

'It's classic Cormac McCarthy darkness'

With the finishing touches being applied to Prometheus, Ridley Scott's thoughts are already turning to his next project, The Counsellor. The great Cormac McCarthy is the man behind the script - his first original screenplay to date - and the director is gearing up to start shooting in mid-June, almost as soon as he's finished with his Prometheus press duties. No sunbathing and sangria for this man.

"We start a week after Prometheus comes out," says Scott, who's been speaking to Empire about the dark-hued crime thriller McCarthy has penned. "It has a classic Cormac McCarthy darkness which makes you sick to the pit of your stomach. It's really frightening. It's saying: 'Don't play with the devil, don't step across the line, don't think you can do it and get away with it. You can't'."

Shades of Prometheus' playing-with-fire theme perhaps? Like No Country For Old Men, McCarthy's novel that was turned into a mod-noir Western to such terrific effect by the Coen brothers, The Counsellor pitches a venal man in deep and over his head. That man is a respected lawyer (Michael Fassbender) who dips a toe into the drug business without preparing himself for the bleak consequences.

It's well-trodden McCarthy turf but something of a departure for Scott, who talks enthusiastically about the identity parade of good, bad and ugly characters the writer has created: "There are five wonderful characters with honestly some of the best dialogue I've ever read."

For more Sir Ridley exclusives on The Counsellor and Prometheus, check out Empire's May issue. It's on sale from Thursday, March 29.