Looks like Marky Mark is heading from the gym to the courtroom. The actor/producer/former musician is currently filming Michael Bay’s Pain and Gain alongside Dwayne Johnson, but according to Variety, Wahlberg is in early talks to star in and produce The Partner, based on acclaimed novelist John Grisham’s 2005 book. More details after the jump.
If the deal goes through, Wahlberg will play “Patrick Lanigan, a young partner in a prominent law firm who fakes his own death to steal a fortune from his company before starting a new life in Brazil.” Sounds like a tiny departure from the generally straight-laced protagonists in Grisham’s work, and with Wahlberg’s famously rocky history growing up in Boston, perhaps he’ll be able to bring a certain reality to the part that other actors lack.
Grisham’s law-based dramas have been adapted for film with big names in the leads before: Tom Cruise in The Firm; Julia Roberts and Denzel Washington in The Pelican Brief; Tommy Lee Jones in The Client; Matthew McConaughey, Sandra Bullock, and Samuel L. Jackson in A Time To Kill; Chris O’Donnell in The Chamber; Matt Damon in The Rainmaker; and John Cusack in Runaway Jury.
The Blind Side director John Lee Hancock was at one point attached to write and direct The Partner, but he ended up stepping away from the project to direct Saving Mr. Banks for Disney so writers and directors are still being courted for this one. Wahlberg will next be seen on the big screen in Seth MacFarlane’s directorial debut, Ted.