Leonardo DiCaprio and Dennis Lehane have been reported as kicking the tires on a Travis McGee movie adaptation. DiCaprio has been interested for years, but Lehane is a new addition, according to Variety.
The website called Travis McGee a “World War II drama,” and said that Fox has tapped Shutter Island/Mystic River scribe Lehane to ink a script that might hold DiCaprio’s attention. The actor is no stranger to Lehane’s material having previously starred in the film adaptation of Shutter Island.
The McGee character first appeared in a series of 21 novels by legendary mystery writer John D. McDonald, and his novel Deep Blue Good-by is cited as the basis for a Travis McGee movie adaptation.
With Dennis Lehane taking this project, it will mark the second time the novelist has turned screenwriter, and the first time on a film that isn’t an adaptation of his own material. He recently handled script chores on Animal Rescue, an upcoming film starring Noomi Rapace and Tom Hardy, based on his short story of the same name.
The character of Travis McGee can best be described as a treasure hunter-private investigator, though he doesn’t have any law enforcement or private investigator background. In the novels, he considered himself a “salvage consultant,” who charged his clients to recover property.
The Deep Blue Good-by (1964) was the first in the series, and The Lonely Silver Rain (1984) was the last. During its run, 1980’s The Green Ripper was perhaps the most recognized, picking up a National Book Award that same year.
The current film has been brewing since around 2010 when, IndieWire notes, Oliver Stone was attached to direct, followed by Paul Greengrass. Leonardo DiCaprio has been the one constant.
If the actor is still as keen on the project, however, he may have to work it around a possible Hamlet adaptation that would re-team him with his Gatsby director, Baz Luhrmann.
Would you like to see Dennis Lehane and Leonardo DiCaprio team up for a Travis McGee movie? Who do you think should direct?