Coen Brothers Sign On to Write (and Maybe Direct) an Adaptation of Ross Macdonald’s “Black Money”
Hardboiled has always been the right key for Joel and Ethan Coen to play in, and whether in jest or with a straight face, the filmmaking duo have paid handsome tribute to some of the genre’s elite writers, from Raymond Chandler to Dashiell Hammett to James M. Cain to Raymond Chandler again.
One hardboiled elite that hasn’t yet made his presence directly felt in the Coen brothers’ work is Ross Macdonald—writer of the Lew Archer detective stories, and also the well-accepted genre torchbearer following Chandler’s health decline in the 1950s. Black Money, a 1966 double-crossed love and gambling novel, is of Macdonald’s most beloved works, and as such, the Bridge of Spies writers didn’t question the opportunity to adapt it into a movie.
Optioned from a fellow fraternally-named movie giant in Warner Brothers, the Coen brothers have accepted the job to write the script, and are open to—but not committed to—the idea of directing when the time comes. Currently, the duo are in post-production on Hail, Caesar!, which is a “musical comedy” of sorts that has roots as far back as 2004, and is finally set for a release on February 5 of next year.
Just pray that their writing process goes more smoothly than Barton Fink’s.