Chicago in the early 1890s was the backdrop for both the World's Fair and a skilled serial killer. Erik Larson's book The Devil in the White City explored the prolifically murderous H.H. Holmes, whose true story is once again on track for the big screen in an upcoming film adaptation directed by Martin Scorsese and starring Leonardo DiCaprio.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Devil in the White City film is back in development at Paramount after being previously let go by the studio. It looks like Devil in the White City will be Scorsese's next movie, once again teaming him up with DiCaprio, who will play Holmes, a man who posed as a doctor and killed a staggering number of people during the chaos of the "White City" being erected in Chicago by architect Daniel H. Burnham. DiCaprio is a big fan of the true story and acquired the adaptation rights in 2010.

Billy Ray (Captain Phillips, The Hunger Games) will write the screenplay adaptation of Larson's well-researched non-fiction 2002 book, The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America.

In development hell for years, Devil in the White City was once set to star Tom Cruise and at another point in time was going to be directed by Kathryn Bigelow. Stay tuned to Daily Dead for further updates, and if you're not familiar with Larson's book, we have the official synopsis (via Goodreads):

"Author Erik Larson imbues the incredible events surrounding the 1893 Chicago World's Fair with such drama that readers may find themselves checking the book's categorization to be sure that 'The Devil in the White City' is not, in fact, a highly imaginative novel. Larson tells the stories of two men: Daniel H. Burnham, the architect responsible for the fair's construction, and H.H. Holmes, a serial killer masquerading as a charming doctor.

Burnham's challenge was immense. In a short period of time, he was forced to overcome the death of his partner and numerous other obstacles to construct the famous "White City" around which the fair was built. His efforts to complete the project, and the fair's incredible success, are skillfully related along with entertaining appearances by such notables as Buffalo Bill Cody, Susan B. Anthony, Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison.

The activities of the sinister Dr. Holmes, who is believed to be responsible for scores of murders around the time of the fair, are equally remarkable. He devised and erected the World's Fair Hotel, complete with crematorium and gas chamber, near the fairgrounds and used the event as well as his own charismatic personality to lure victims."

Source: THR
  • Derek Anderson
    About the Author - Derek Anderson

    Raised on a steady diet of R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps books and Are You Afraid of the Dark?, Derek has been fascinated with fear since he first saw ForeverWare being used on an episode of Eerie, Indiana.

    When he’s not writing about horror as the Senior News Reporter for Daily Dead, Derek can be found daydreaming about the Santa Carla Boardwalk from The Lost Boys or reading Stephen King and Brian Keene novels.