Yorgos Lanthimos Set for ‘Favourite’ Reunion with New Gothic Western Monster Movie

Zack Sharf

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Yorgos Lanthimos is reuniting with his “The Favourite” screenwriter Tony McNamara for an adaptation of Richard Brautigan’s 1974 Gothic Western novel “Hawkline Monster” (via The Wrap). The project is backed by New Regency and Element Pictures. McNamara’s script will follow two gunslingers who are hired by a 15-year-old girl to kill a monster that lives underneath the basement in the home of the title character Miss Hawkline. Lanthimos is set to direct the project, which has floated around Hollywood for years and has courted the likes of Hal Ashby and Tim Burton. Ashby’s attempt to adapt the book was to star Jack Nicholson and Dustin Hoffman.

The news of “Hawkline Monster” comes at a major moment for Tony McNamara, the writer who is currently earning praise for creating the new Hulu period comedy “The Great,” starring Elle Fanning and Nicholas Hoult. McNamara co-wrote “The Favourite” with Deborah Davis. The two were nominated for the Oscar for Best Original Screenplay and won screenwriting prizes at the British Independent Film Awards and the BAFTA Film Award for their work on “The Favourite.” Lanthimos was also Oscar nominated for his director of “The Favourite.” The period drama nabbed 10 nominations and won Best Actress for Olivia Colman.

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“Hawkline Monster” joins a growing list of projects Lanthimos has in development. “The Favourite” remains the Greek filmmaker’s last directorial effort. Shortly before the 2019 Oscars, news broke that Lanthimos was attached to direct an adaptation of Jim Thompson’s 1964 novel “Pop. 1280,” which tells the story of a small-town sheriff whose corruption escalates in the lead-up to his next election. The project also has the backing of Element Pictures. A second project, “The Man in the Rockefeller Suit: The Astonishing Rise and Spectacular Fall of a Serial Imposter,” was announced last November. Lanthimos is directing and executive producing the project for Searchlight Television based on Mark Seal’s nonfiction book. Searchlight was the distributor behind “The Favourite.”

Producers attached to “Hawkline Monster” include Roy Lee of Vertigo (“It”), Andrew Trapani (“Winchester”), Steven Schneider (“Insidious”), and Ed Guiney and Andrew Lowe of Element Pictures. Paul Swensen and Ianthe Brautigan are set as executive produce. Natalie Lehmann of New Regency is also overseeing the project.

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