Houdini may get another chance to surprise and shock on the silver screen.
Summit Entertainment has acquired the rights to “The Secret Life of Houdini: The Making of America’s First Superhero,” the biography of Harry Houdini by William Kalush and Larry Sloman.
Kalush and Sloman’s book became widely known for suggesting that Houdini was a spy for Britain and asked to be an adviser to Czar Nicholas II in pre-revolutionary Russia, before World War I. The book also suggests that Houdini’s death may not have been a result of that famous punch to the gut, but retribution from some of the spiritualists Houdini famously debunked.
As for the movie, Summit Studios isn’t exactly going for realism:
The studio, which is looking for writers to adapt the book, does not aim to make a biopic but rather an action thriller featuring a character who is part Indiana Jones and part Sherlock Holmes. Summit hopes to cash in on worldwide recognition of Houdini’s name while potentially launching a franchise.
Well, if the real story doesn’t make Hollywood millions…
Kalush is also featured in this NPR interview from 2006. Click the link below to read an excerpt from the book.