Acclaimed screenwriter Anthony McCarten has signed on to pen a contemporary screenplay that will be loosely based on the 1910 novel Le Fantome de L’Opera by Gaston Leroux, under the working title, Phantom. The filmmaker, who has garnered fame for scribing such biopics as Bohemian Rhapsody, Darkest Hour and most recently, The Two Popes, will also produce the music-driven, big scale movie through his London-based production company, Muse Of Fire Productions.
The film will reportedly be a psychological thriller similar to Black Swan and Misery, and set in the contemporary music scene of England’s capital city. McCarten will maintain Leroux’s depiction of the dark, destructive relationship between the title villain and his young singer protégé, Christine Daaé in his movie adaptation.
However, the screenwriter plans to remain true to modern society’s skepticism of the romanticism that was associated with the story in its previous reiterations.
He will instead lean into the suspense and horror elements that were a large driving force in Leroux’s book.
McCarten will also serve as a producer on the drama, alongside SB Projects’ Scooter Braun, James Ship and Scott Manson, the latter of whom will serve as the executive producer. They will also produce alongside Denis O’Sullivan and Jeff Kalligheri for Compelling Pictures, which will also serve as the financier.
While the four-time Academy Award-nominated McCarten will write the script for Phantom, Braun and Shin will secure some of music’s leading songwriters and producers to create new songs for the film, who they haven’t disclosed yet. But they will have a diverse talent pool to choose from, as besides being a filmmaker, Braun also manages some of contemporary music’s biggest talents. The thriller will incorporate contemporary themes into the tracks, which will be sung when a character performs them within the story.
Speaking about the songs and overall film, McCarten has said that the movie “We’re aiming to do something quite groundbreaking with music and the score, and something that may also be new for the artists themselves.” The filmmaker also promised that “We’ll reinvent this story for a new generation.