Now that David O. Russell has walked out of the video game adaptation Uncharted, he’s once more been released into the wild to let his primary animal instincts take over—namely, sniffing around projects and engaging in potentially fruitless mating rituals. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the latest film that has briefly caught Russell’s attention is Maleficent, perhaps the eldest of the now-several Sleeping Beauty adaptations in the works. Though you probably shouldn’t put much stock in it for obvious reasons, Russell is said to be “circling” the film that would likely star Angelina Jolie in the titular evil witch role. It’s also highly possible, however, that Russell will be repelled by the scent of Tim Burton, who left Maleficent recently after spending many months marking his territory.
And as always with David O. Russell, there are dozens and dozens of other scripts that he’s hunting: He told Vulture that he’s working first on reteaming with Mark Wahlberg on The Silver Linings Playbook, and admitted that he’d like to see Jolie star in that, while also saying he’d talked to her about “several projects.” And while that could definitely mean Maleficent, it could also mean any of the other films Russell has been stalking around, including (just to name a few) his biopic of Mayor Buddy Cianci, his recently completed “romantic Western” Two Guns, his action-drama with Lorenzo di Bonaventura called Mission, a Russ Meyer biopic, a project with Ice Cube, Old St. Louis, and even that Fighter sequel that Wahlberg keeps mentioning. And of course, any and all of these could be quickly abandoned if Russell is spooked by the crack of a dry twig and goes scurrying off into the wilderness.