Between writing for sitcoms, co-creating Who Wants to be a Millionaire and penning the screenplays for Dirty Pretty Things and David Cronenberg'sEastern Promises, British writer Steven Knight also found time to write some novels. He even adapted one of them, Alphabet City, for the screen, though nothing originally came of his early draft. Now, though, Universal has hired gangland specialistJames Gray (just off We Own the Night) to rewrite and direct the movie, which is already slated to go into production next spring.

Alphabet City is long out of print, so it's hard to find a reliable summary of its plot. What everyone does agree on is that it's set (shockingly) in the part of New York's Lower East Side known as Alphabet City (it's so far east that the avenues go below First, so they're given letter names, instead), and centers on a journalist who investigates gangs and drugs use there. According to Variety, the journalist goes undercover to get a look at what's really happening in the area. What's weird, though, is that a web search for the book's title brings up descriptions that suggest the journalist is either making things up, or finds the events he's writing about in his (fictional?) book coming true. So, it's either going to be a gritty story about New York City, or a movie about a writer who gets caught in a big lie and has to face the consequences.

I don't suppose any of you guys have read the book and can shed some light on the plot?
categories Movies, Cinematical