In 1893, the World's Fair came to Chicago, Illinois. Under the hands of Daniel Burnham and John Root, a white, gleaming city was created. While Burnham was bringing it together, another man was building nearby. Dr. H.H. Holmes was creating a castle made for torture with secret, locked rooms and a chute that led from the second floor to the basement. In 2004, the lives of the two men were merged with fiction in Erik Larson's bestseller, The Devil in the White City, which was immediately picked up by Paramount.

The book was under the wing of Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner's production company, where it stayed until, according to Variety, the deal stalled due to "creative differences" between the duo and Kathryn Bigelow, who was set to direct and produce. Now with Cruise/Wagner off the lot, Paramount is casting a fresh eye at the popular book after being approached by Michael Shamberg and Stacey Sher, who previously brought us World Trade Center. There has been no further word on casting or production, but I'm sure this will be a star-studded affair, if it makes it out of development this time.

As for the story -- Larson basically intertwined the life of the famous Chicago architect with one of the city's most infamous serial killers. Dr. Holmes trapped and murdered a number of people in the late 1800's, especially while the World's Fair was in town. He is said to have confessed to 27 murders, although only nine have been confirmed -- which isn't surprising, considering the man had asbestos-lined rooms, a surgery area, lime pits and a crematory.

categories Movies, Cinematical