Getting a jump on the delayed premiere of their hopeful Oscar-contender Killers of the Flower Moon, the Oscar-winning duo Martin Scorsese and Leonardo DiCaprio are joining forces once more, according to The Hollywood Reporter. If all goes swimmingly, Scorsese may have pegged an Oscar-winning trio. Apple Original Films has reportedly snagged the rights to New York Times‘ bestseller David Grann‘s eighth novel The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder, and Scorsese and DiCaprio are set to direct and star, respectively.
The Wager is a period tale set in the early 1740s that chronicles the arrival of a patchwork vessel on the shores of Brazil. The makeshift raft carries with it the emaciated bodies of 30 men, barely alive after a perilous journey, who tell a miraculous tale of their survival. The men are, purportedly, what’s left of the crew of His Majesty’s British ship the Wager, which had been tasked with tailing a Spanish warship carrying a treasure known as “the prize of all the oceans.” While chasing after the treasure, the Wager wrecked on a deserted island off Patagonia’s coast, stranding the crew, and forcing the men to face starvation and the elements. After piecing together their raft the men sailed over 2500 miles of stormy seas for over three months before being hailed as heroes upon their arrival in Brazil.
Six months later a ramshackle craft in worse shape than the first washes on shore in Chile, and the three men that wash up with it have a much darker take on what happened on that island. The three men charge the first 30 castaways with being mutineers. The accusations incite a fatal back-and-forth that unravels the anarchy that unfolded amongst the crew while marooned on the island. In the end, the Admiralty declares a court martial in order to uncover the truth, and those found guilty will hang.
Prior to this announcement, Scorsese and DiCaprio worked together for the sixth time on the highly-anticipated historical crime-drama Killers of the Flower Moon, now slated for a 2023 release in anticipation of a Cannes premiere. The film stars Scorsese-muse Robert De Niro, Brendan Fraser, and Lily Gladstone alongside DiCaprio in a harrowing 1920s drama about an FBI investigation into the mysterious murders of members of the Osage Tribe. The screenplay is adapted from another best-selling novel by The Wager‘s author Grann, which earned him an Edgar Allan Poe Award.
Scorsese is a renowned filmmaker of many accolades whose work has helped shape cinema across his half-century of movie-making. His credits include Taxi Driver, Goodfellas, The Wolf of Wall Street, and The Departed, which garnered Scorsese his Oscar for Best Director. His films tend to push boundaries and his style is resolute and violent — in a word, legendary. His partnership with DiCaprio began two decades ago with Gangs of New York, and the two have continued the momentum ever since with films like The Aviator and The Wolf of Wall Street, both of which earned DiCaprio Oscar nominations.
The Wager will be produced by Scorsese, DiCaprio, and Jennifer Davisson under Appian Way Productions, and Imperative Entertainment‘s Bradley Thomas and Dan Friedkin. Eden Production‘s Richard Plepler is set to executive produce the film. At this time no further cast members have been announced.
Grann‘s novel The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny, and Murder is available for pre-order now with Penguin Random House where you can also purchase Killers of the Flower Moon before the film’s theatrical release with Paramount next year.