You know who’s never made a bad movie? Albert Hughes. Seriously, we don’t talk about this guy enough. He made several good movies with his brother Allen, including Menace II Society, Dead Presidents and The Book of Eli, before going out on his own last year with the visually stunning coming-of-age film Alpha, which earned solid reviews from critics. Now Hughes has set his next feature, and it’s a return to Dead Presidents territory for him.
Hughes is set to direct North Hollywood, based on the true story of the deadly 1997 North Hollywood shootout, for Greg Silverman‘s Stampede, which has also set Inside Man scribe Russell Gewirtz to write the script. Stuart Ford‘s AGC Studios has come onboard the project as principal financier, with additional financing to come from Stampede, which is producing in partnership with Cedar Park and Industry Entertainment.
Hughes will examine the events of February 28, 1997, when war came to the streets of LA as a military-style shootout ravaged North Hollywood and became the largest gun battle in the history of American law enforcement. The film tells the story of the ill-equipped heroes who confronted heavily armed bank robbers Larry Phillips Jr. and Emil Matasareanu.
Silverman and Stampede’s Lisa Zambri will produce alongside Cedar Park’s David Ayer and Chris Long, as well as Industry’s Stephen Crawford and Ava Jamshidi. Ford and Stampede’s Gideon Yu and Chris Bosco will serve as executive producers. Production will begin early next year in New Mexico, and Hughes and the producers are already in advanced discussions for the film’s ensemble cast.
“Albert is the dream partner to bring this story to life with his signature style and authentic eye for detail. We’re beyond thrilled to be working with him. This is an incredible true story many of us remember, and Russel’s script is just electric — a staggering work of drama and violence fueled by media obsession. It’s a cautionary tale for the world we find ourselves in,” said Silverman.
“North Hollywood is a gritty, ultra-realistic action thriller, and Albert is the perfect filmmaker to bring such a kinetic, powerful true story to the screen,” added Ford.
In addition to the aforementioned films, Hughes also co-directed the 2001 serial killer thriller From Hell starring Johnny Depp, and he recently wrapped Showtime’s adaptation of The Good Lord Bird starring Ethan Hawke. He’s represented by CAA, while Gewirtz is repped by Industry Entertainment.