As revealed last autumn, Warners are planning to add to the recent spate of proposed Biblical epics with its own yarn based around Roman prefectPontius Pilate. Deadline now reveals that Brad Pitt is circling the lead role. Reports that it's because he wants to wash his hands of World War Zremain unverified.
The familiar version of Pilate is more or less the one played - rather well - by Hristo Shopov in Mel Gibson's The Passion Of The Christ, and by David Bowie in Scorsese's Last Temptation (although perhaps you prefer Telly Savalas in The Greatest Story Ever Told). He's the politician that orders Jesus' crucifixion, securing himself a role as one of history's greatest villains.
There's plenty more to his story than that though, and the idea of the character's younger years as a ferocious military badass under the rule of Emperor Tiberius, might perhaps explain the attraction to the historically, epically-inclined Brad Pitt of Wolfgang Petersen's Troy.
Pitt, just coming off the aforementioned World War Z, Steve McQueen'sTwelve Years A Slave and Ridley Scott's The Counsellor, has yet to commit, but Deadline believes that may soon change.
Warners seem to have great confidence in Vera Blasi's Pontius Pilatescreenplay, which blends historical and fictional elements, and features juicy walk-ons for the likes of Salome and Caligula. If it happens, it'll follow Darren Aronofsky's Noah, and possible other Biblical projects from the likes of Will Smith and, tantalisingly, Paul Verhoeven.