After a lengthy pre-production process that saw a revolving door of talent join and then exit the project, Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio’s “Devil in the White City” series is no longer moving forward at Hulu, sources familiar with the situation have confirmed. to IndieWire. The adaptation will be shopped to other outlets by ABC Signature, which remains committed to producing the show.
The news is the latest in a long line of failures for “Devil in the White City,” which has bounced around Hollywood in various iterations for more than a decade. Based on Erik Larson’s book of the same name, “Devil in the White City” is set against the backdrop of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair and pits architect Daniel H. Burnham’s quest against destruction to stage a historic event that serial killer Dr. HH Holmes brought upon the city.
DiCaprio first acquired the rights to the bestseller in 2010 and planned to play the role of Burnham in a feature film directed by Scorsese. That film never materialized, and the project was eventually developed as a limited series with DiCaprio and Scorsese as executive producers. A variety of A-list talent have flirted with the project at various stages, and it recently came very close to fruition at Hulu with Keanu Reeves playing Burnham and TÁR filmmaker Todd Field helming the entire series. “Castle Rock” co-creator Sam Shaw also served as showrunner.
But Reeves quickly dropped out of the series, and Field left soon after. Without this talent, Hulu also seems to have lost interest in making the series happen.
Scorsese and DiCaprio’s search for a new network and platform should fit in with the duo’s busy schedules. Their next film together, the Scorsese-helmed “Killers of the Flower Moon,” is expected to be released later this year. After that, they plan to reunite for the shipwreck survivor story “The Wager,” based on a nonfiction book by “Killers of the Flower Moon” author David Grann. Both films are produced and distributed by Apple.
Reporting by Brian Welk.