Rob Marshall has only directed four films. The first three were "Chicago," "Memoirs of a Geisha" and "Nine." His latest, "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," is expected to out-gross his first three by a significant margin. If it doesn't, he'll be in a lot of trouble -- as will the people at Disney who turned their franchise over to a guy best known for musicals. But apparently "Pirates" star Johnny Depp likes him enough to bring him on board his forthcoming passion project: a remake of the 1936 film "The Thin Man."
Marshall made it official today that he was signing up for the film, which Depp has been developing since October with Warner Bros. From the beginning, it was reported that Depp wanted Marshall to helm the movie, which is supposedly going to keep its Prohibition-era setting but have a contemporary spin. The original film, based on the Dashiell Hammett novel, featured Nick and Nora Charles, a married couple that solves crimes: Depp will play Nick, but no one knows who Nora will be.
It's worth noting that with "The Thin Man," Marshall has still never
made a film set in the present day. And like "Chicago," his greatest
success to date, "The Thin Man" will feature well-dressed, tart-tongued
characters from the early 20th century. (Adding to the similarities: It
was earlier reported that this remake may feature a few song-and-dance
Still, there's one thing this announcement doesn't mention, which is what happens if "On Stranger Tides" tanks. In one way it would be good for "The Thin Man" -- Depp wouldn't have to worry about making any more "Pirates" movies -- but Marshall's commercial clout would definitely take a hit as well. Depp waited a long time for Marshall to say yes to "Thin Man": He probably doesn't want to be put into a position where he's forced to cut Marshall loose because he killed the "Pirates" franchise.