DiCaprio As Nicholai Hel


The Oliver Stone film of Don Winslow’s thriller, Savages has finished shooting and is set for release on 9/28/12. It features a remarkably high-profile cast, including Benecio Del Toro, Salma Hayek, Blake Lively, Taylor Kitsch, Aaron Johnson, Emile Hirsch, John Travolta, and Uma Thurman.

Buzz must be good. Warner Bros. just purchased the rights to another title by Winslow, Satori (Grand Central, 3/7/11), with the intent of starring Leonardo DiCaprio in a multi-film series, similar to the successful Bourne franchise the studio developed for Matt Damon, based on the books by Robert Ludlum.

Following his best-selling book, Savages, Winslow was commissioned to write Satori as a prequel to the 1979 best-seller, Shibumi, by Trevanian (the pseudonym for film scholar, Rodney William Whitaker, who died in 2005). Both books feature the handsome mystic and renowned lover, Nicholai Hel, who also happens to be the world’s most accomplished assassin. When Satori was published earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal called Hel “one of the singular figures of 20th-century espionage fiction.”

The prequel shows Hel at the age of 26, years before we see him in Shibumi, which begins with the character in his late fifties. DiCaprio is in his mid thirties, giving him several years to catch up the Trevanian version of Hel. If Satori is a successful film, expect to hear that Winslow has been tapped to write more prequels.

DiCaprio is currently in Australia, where Baz Luhrmann has just begun filming The Great Gatsby. The movie is already having an effect on fashion.

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