Sean Penn Will Be A Prone Gunman

Existential Bourne, anyone?

Sean Penn, Gangster Squad

Sean Penn: Action man? Sure, why not? Though he often sticks to more dramatic roles, it seems that Penn is happy to pick up a gun at the moment. He’ll be seen early next year as the villain in Gangster Squad, and now comes word that he’s in negotiations to play the hero in action thriller Prone Gunman.

Just don’t go thinking that this is Penn signing up to be a slightly older, crankier sniper. According to The Hollywood Reporter, it’s being put together by Joel Silver and will be based on Jean-Patrick Manchette’s novel.

The basic plot seems Bourne again, with international operative Martin Terrier betrayed by the organisation he works for, sparking a cat-and-mouse chase across Europe. At every turn, he’s dogged by those out to stop him. Dogged. Because his name is Terrier. Dogged. We’d get our coat, but someone has already set it on fire for that pun.

But Manchette’s book has been described as existentialist, with just as much exploration of the human condition as humans getting their condition changed by bullets and fists. Peter Travis was the man tasked with distilling all that into a film, and it appears Penn likes what he sees.

StudioCanal is putting up the cash and now the team is hunting for a director. Gangster Squad, meanwhile, will be out on January 11.