In the mid ‘70s, intrepid tabloid reporter Carl Kolchak haunted the seedy underbelly of Chicago as he hunted down supernatural killers in the television series ‘Kolchak: The Night Stalker’. The show starred Darren McGavin in the lead role (you probably know McGavin as the father in ‘A Christmas Story’) and, while it only lasted one season, it has become a cult hit over the years. There have been short stories, comic series, and a short lived attempt at a new TV show in 2005 with Stuart Townsend in the Kolchak role, which was cancelled quickly due to low ratings.
Now Disney is planning on reviving the Night Stalker again, this time as a feature film. Early this year, Disney signed Edgar Wright as director for the film remake. Wright is well known to genre fans for writing/directing ‘Shaun of the Dead’, ‘Scott Pilgrim vs the World’, and the uber-awesome BBC series ‘Spaced’. Joining Wright on the project is none other than Johnny Depp who will be playing the new Carl Kolchak.
Now Deadline is reporting that Disney has signed D.V. DeVincentis on to pen a script for ‘Night Stalker’. DeVincentis’ writing definitely has a hip style style that might match with a Wright directed ‘Night Stalker’. DeVincentis is most famous for writing the screenplays to the John Cusack vehicles ‘High Fidelity’ and ‘Grosse Pointe Blank’.
It’s Disney so I expect that the new version of ‘Night Stalker’ will keep the rating to PG-13 territory at least but, while some of the stories of Kolchak got pretty dark, they never really got gruesome and, so far, I think Disney is doing a good job in assembling the team for this one.
So are you ready to see the noir underbelly of Chicago highlighted by the investigative vigor of Kolchak? If you don’t know who Kolchak is, the entire series is available for streaming on Netflix Instant so that you can catch up before the movie hits (most likely in 2014).