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John Cusack is set to play renowned author Edgar Allen Poe in a movie. Don’t frown and think “ugh, another biopic.” For starters, Poe is a fascinating figure and a Cusack-starring biopic wouldn’t be a terrible thing. That’s not this movie, though. Cusack’s flick, directed by V for Vendetta and Ninja Assassin helmer James McTeigue, is a fictionalized account of the author’s last days.
The real Poe died under mysterious circumstances in 1849, found delirious and wandering through the streets of Baltimore in another man’s clothes. He was taken to a hospital, where he died a few days later. No one has ever figured out what put him in that state or why he called out the name “Reynolds” repeatedly on the night before his death. The movie, a thriller built around Poe’s search for a serial killer inspired by his own work, will presumably address some of these questions from a fictional perspective.
The movie has been going by the title The Raven for some time, but an announcement today revealing the film’s planned March 9, 2012, release date instead calls it The Untitled Raven Project. No reason is given the name change, although it’s worth mentioning that Mark Wahlberg is set to produce and potentially star in a sci-fi adaptation called The Raven.