Actor Paul Bettany in Talks to Star in Priest Film

posted on by Egan Loo
Live-action adaptation of Min-Woo Hyung's horror manhwa from Tokyopop

The Hollywood Reporter newspaper reports that actor Paul Bettany (A Beautiful Mind, Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World, The Da Vinci Code) is in talks to star in Screen Gems' live-action film adaptation of Min-Woo Hyung's Priest horror manhwa. The manhwa tells the story of an expert in ancient languages who accidentally resurrects an angel from Hell, Temozareal. The man is forced to sell his soul to the Devil in a attempt to correct his mistake. Cory Goodman (The Brood) wrote the movie adaptation's script.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film version "is set in a world ravaged by centuries of war between man and vampire and follows a warrior priest (Bettany) who turns against the church to track down a murderous band of vampires who have kidnapped his niece." Scott Charles Stewart, a co-founder of the Orphanage special effects studio, already agreed to direct the project. Stewart and Bettany just finished filming another Screen Gems supernatural thriller called Legion, which is slated for a January 2010 opening.

The North American publisher Tokyopop announced in 2001 that it had acquired the original Priest manhwa. Michael De Luca, Stars Road Entertainment's Josh Donen, and Mitchell Peck are producing the live-action film version. Andrew Douglas was originally slated to direct the actors Gerard Butler and Steven Strait in the film, but that version never came together.

Thank you to Daniel Zelter for the news tip.

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