‘Taken’ Director to Take On Serial Killer Thriller ‘Big Stone Grid’
In a particularly strong year for horror movies, one of the lesser-known titles of 2015 has to be Bone Tomahawk, the debut film by writer-director S. Craig Zahler. It wasn’t just the horror fans that appreciated its slow pacing and bursts of graphic violence; I attended a signature screening at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City and sat next to a pair of elderly women who laughed uproariously at the funny parts and powered through the gore. Certainly, it was a film that made S. Craig Zahler a name to remember.
So I was excited to hear that another one of Zahler’s screenplays would be moving forward, this time with an action genre veteran at the helm. On Friday, Variety reported that Pierre Morel had been signed to direct Big Stone Grid, which the outlet describes as a movie about cops tracking serial killers. Morel may not be a household name, but he cut his teeth on action movies like the original Taken and the French-language District B13. He also steps into some pretty sizable shoes, as Michael Mann was once rumored to be interested in directing Big Stone Grid. No pressure.
Back in 2011, when Zahler’s script was picked up, the Hollywood Reporter described it as a crime thriller in the vein of Seven or Marathon Man, following two police detectives whose investigation of a suicide leads them to discover a “terrifying extortion ring” that operates underneath their city. With the Hollywood Reporter referring to a conspiracy and Variety saying it is about cops who investigate serial killers (plural), this could be a fun spin on The Kingsman for the crime thriller crowd. And if either Morel or Zahler feel like reaching out to their frequent collaborators and bringing Kurt Russell or Liam Neeson on board? The more the merrier, I say.