Here's a sentence we didn't expect to type today: according to The Playlist, Ben Stiller will direct the eight-episode Escape From Clinton Correctional, a new Showtime limited series based on the real-life exploits of escaped prisoners Richard Matt and David Sweat. Already onboard Stiller's cast: Patricia Arquette and Benicio Del Toro.
For those unfamiliar with the story:
The project will dramatize that incredible and wild true story of Richard Matt and David Sweat, who broke out of the titular maximum security prison in New York with the help of employee Joyce Mitchell, who wanted Richard to kill her husband. She got cold feet on that latter idea, and Matt and Sweat went on the run, leading to a three week manhunt that gripped the nation.
The Playlist goes on to specify that Del Toro will be playing Richard Matt, while Arquette will be playing Joyce Mitchell. Still not cast: the role of David Sweat. Obviously, the Birth.Movies.Death. staff is pulling for a Sam Saathoff win on that one, but let's be real: we're gonna watch this no matter who gets the role.
This is an unusual move for Stiller, a director primarily known for making outrageous comedies (and, regrettably, The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty) rather than, y'know, gritty prison-escape dramas. Given the absurdity of the story surrounding the case, one wonders if the whole thing might not take on a darkly humorous tone before all's said and done. Feels like a safe bet, doesn't it?
Anyway, not much more to report at this time, but we'll be keeping our ear to the ground for further updates. Stay tuned.