Javier Bardem, Christian Bale On Fast Track To Killing Pablo

Plus: glass-house-dwelling director throws stones at competing Escobar biopic.

After waiting through nearly five years of development, producer Bob Yari is putting his "passion project" -- a biopic about slain Medellin drug lord Pablo Escobar -- on the fast track.

Variety reports that the Yari Film Group has signed Javier Bardem to play Escobar, and Christian Bale to take on the role of Escobar's nemesis, Delta Force commander Major Steve Jacoby. Joe Carnahan is on board to direct the film, which is titled Killing Pablo, and will be based on Mark Bowden's book Killing Pablo: The Hunt for the World's Greatest Outlaw.

Escobar's infamy has proven inspirational for a number of creative types. From the article:

Escobar's rise as a leader of the drug cartel in Medellin, Colombia, began in the 1970s. After years of terrorizing police and political leaders, Escobar was targeted in 1992 by a coalition of Colombian police and military, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and the CIA; he was killed the following year.

Reflecting his notoriety, Escobar served as the basis for the drug kingpin in Tom Clancy's "Clear and Present Danger"; the airport in the videogame "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" is named after him; and a story arc about a fictional biopic of the druglord -- "Medellin" -- has run through multiple seasons of HBO's "Entourage."

The article says the film could begin shooting next June -- if the writers', actors', and directors' guilds don't strike -- and whenever it comes out, it'll apparently have to contend with another Escobar biopic. The other film, titled simply Escobar, is listed at the IMDB as being directed by Andrzej Bartkowiak from a script by Greg Mellott and Richard Rionda del Castro. The script, incidentally, has been read by Carnahan. He didn't care for it.

In a post at his blog, published September 21, "Smokin' Joe" insists he isn't "a hater" before railing against the Escobar script, saying:

Wow. If you're gonna make a movie about Pablo you gotta do better then some hackneyed, hagiographic 'Scarface' knockoff. It would've been great if the script had been solid. Stern competition is good for the soul...but this one is so lacking in the very basic tenets of dramatic storytelling that it comes off as this amateurish, cardboard account of what was the single greatest criminal legacy of the last century.

And they better hope Pablo is actually dead. He gets wind of this script and it'll create marked men overnight and have fresh bullets flying anew.

How's that direct-to-video Smokin' Aces prequel coming, Joe?

Source: Variety
Source: Smokin' Joe Carnahan



Kenneth Roos

wow, I read this, then I think of the cannes response to Medellin in Entourage.

Oct 2 - 06:19 AM


Daniel Klein

Didn't Vincent Chase already do this with some independent director?


Oct 2 - 06:20 AM


joe shmo

lacking the basic tenets of dramatic storytelling? c'mon joey baby. loved narc, HATED suckin' aces. talk about amatuerish. let's stuff a dozen b-listers into a movie, set the stage for a whiz-bang actioner... and then watch jeremy piven blow coke in a hotel room for two hours. what action there was looked like a mess. overambitous boy-with-toys self indulgence. my prediction? corn-ahan overdoes 'Pablo,' too. If you've seen entourage, you already know how this is going to turn out.

Oct 2 - 06:23 AM

blank blank

bob jones

make all the entourage jokes you want, but im optimistic about this. carnahan obviously knew he was going over the top with smoking aces, i think that was his point. but narc was awesome. bale is awesome, javier bardem (although ive only seen him in collateral) is really awesome. so we'll wait and see, but it looks good so far.

Oct 2 - 07:10 AM


Jeremy Morris

sounds like fun

Oct 2 - 07:36 AM


Arend Anton


Oct 2 - 07:37 AM


Brian Thatcher

Every Entourage idea is kinda cool. Thats one of the things that makes entourage so good. I just think that some of these filmmakers would LOVE to title it 'Medellion'.

Oh yeah. Just because the guy has written 1 bad movie doesn't mean he can't be critical of a bad script. Especially if his version is his 'passion' project.
Being as critical as some of you people would suck.

Oct 2 - 09:39 AM


Nate 2709

This movie will be a freakin' masterpiece! Guaranteed.

Oct 2 - 10:19 AM


Justin Dean

I wonder if Pablo will do more coke than scarface?

Oct 2 - 12:11 PM


j _

If Johnny Drama isn't in it, I aint seein it

Oct 2 - 12:52 PM

Unbreakable Samurai

Unbreakable Samurai

I think it will be pretty sweet, Bale and Bardem is a cool combo. Carnahan is a solid director. And if you want to see another Bardem movie blank blank check out The Sea Inside he does a great acting job in it.

Oct 2 - 02:48 PM


Carl Myers

bale rules

Oct 2 - 03:01 PM


Alec G

Bale is a fantastic actor, but just once I'd like to see him play a villain (no Pat Bateman does NOT count). Sure he wouldn't have made a good Escobar, but he's gotta show us an evil side eventually. He could play a good Randall Flagg in the Dark Tower movies if they ever get made.

Oct 2 - 04:08 PM


Russ Reilly

If you want to see Bale being a bad-a** mofo, check out Harsh Times. No, he doesn't play an archetypal "villain", but if you want sick, dark, and violent, here's your role!

Oct 2 - 04:24 PM


Tom Bidinger

i thought sick, dark, and violent described patrick bateman

Oct 2 - 06:24 PM


First Last

Hopefully everyone stays on board. But I'm more than a little afraid that Carnahan is going to turn into the next Tony Scott.

Oct 2 - 07:53 PM


Russ Whittle

Brilliant book, better than Black Hawk Down me thinks. Lets hope they keep all the logistics of what it actually took to catch this dude, it's fascinating stuff...

Oct 2 - 09:47 PM


Eric Rosenthal

Great this movie is finally getting made - it's a helluva book, even better than Blackhawk down.

BUT - the hero of the book was Col. Hugo Martinez and his son - not some delta force guy.
I'm hoping the movie will still be good since it is a terrific, frightening (because it was true) story.

Also let the "Ron Jeremy as Pablo" jokes commence!

Oct 2 - 11:52 PM


Alberto De la Hoz

I'm betting they are making the USA Delta Force guy the main character cause nobody would care about the Colombian colonel. American guy = good. Colombian Drug Overlord = bad. -.-

Oct 3 - 05:37 AM


Alsan Ali

Can't wait for the trailer to get leaked on YouTube. Hopefully they'll be able to sell film rights for more than a dollar though. And well if an Arab offers an insane amount of money for it, they ought to go for it.

... damnit, when does Season 5 start?

Also, did anyone else think that the sci-fi Darren Aronofsky project "Flight" would be way sweeter than Medellion?

Oct 3 - 01:43 AM


Alberto De la Hoz

I'm betting they are making the USA Delta Force guy the main character cause nobody would care about the Colombian colonel. American guy = good. Colombian Drug Overlord = bad. -.-

Oct 3 - 05:37 AM

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