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Tarsem Takes on Hell with Constantine

Warner Bros. has signed director Tarsem (The Cell) to helm its supernatural thriller Constantine based on the DC Comics/Vertigo title Hellblazer. The film will be produced by Lauren Shuler Donner and Richard Donner. The Donner's production company has been working on a Hellblazer adaptation since 1997, when it also had Any Given Sunday and X-Men in the works. No firm start date has been set, though a first quarter date is not being sought due to a possible conflict between the potential actors' strike and pre-production requirements.

The title character, John Constantine, deals with the occult and while he regularly opposes the forces of Hell, he himself is a rogue who uses tricks as well as actual magic (several famous plots in the comic book involved outwitting an increasing furious Satan). The movie summary indicates that Constantine will team with a female police officer to overcome a nefarious threat that spins out of the police department's control. The original script was written by Kevin Brodbin (The Glimmer Man), with a rewrite by Mark Bomback (The Night Caller) and Frank Cappello (No Way Back). The most recent draft was done by Cappello alone.