Seeing as stills are starting to come out for Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn’s latest project, Only God Forgives, one can only assume that work on that film is moving along swimmingly and it’s probably time to start wondering about what he’s going to do next. If the 24-hour news cycle is good for anything, it’s promoting constant speculation. This time, however, the speculation has the benefit of not being completely unfounded.

Deadline Køge is reporting that Refn is currently in negotiations with Dreamworks to helm Button Man, an adaptation of a graphic novel called “Button Man: The Killing Game” that was written by Judge Dredd creator John Wagner. The comic book follows the misadventures of professional killer Harry Exton, who is hired to take part in a game where millionaires have trained assassins battle each other to the death for their amusement. It’s like The Hunger Games, only better because the people trying to kill each other are actually good at it and don’t have to resort to sicking bees on each other and tricking each other into eating berries. Of course, there’s a wrinkle in the story, and it comes when Exton decides that he doesn’t want to be a gladiator anymore and has to find a way to get himself out of the games.

With the enormous popularity of movies about groups of people killing each other that’s happening right now and the knack for filming violence that Refn has shown in…well, every movie he’s ever made, it would appear on the surface that this material matched up with this director will lead to some fun death and destruction for fans of film and some fun profits and profits for Dreamworks executives. Negotiations are still ongoing though, and nothing is official, so let’s wait a while before we start declaring this one a win-win.


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