DiCaprio Loses Akira, to Beat the Reaper Next

Word is that Leonardo DiCaprio’s would-be live-action take on the Japanese anime “Akira” is dead in the waters. With that out of the way, what’s there left for the “Titanic” star to do? Pretty much anything he wants, actually. The guy could get a movie made about a guy (him) shopping for deodorant at a supermarket, for God’s sake. But thankfully instead of that movie, he’s instead attached to produce and star in a film about online casinos as well as another, more intriguing mob movie one called “Beat the Reaper”.

According to THR, the untitled online casino movie is a pitch (that means they haven’t even written the thing yet) from Brian Koppelman and David Levien. The duo knows a thing or two about gambling movies, having written both “Ocean’s 11″ and the poker movie “Rounders”. Basically, they seem to really dig the world of gambling, so who else better to write a movie about such a word?

Meanwhile, Koppelman and Levien are also scheduled to adapt Josh Bazell’s novel “Beat the Reaper” for DiCaprio’s shingle. More about the novel:

The Locanos, a mob family, take in 14-year-old Pietro Brwna (pronounced Browna) after a couple of thugs gun down the grandparents who raised him in their New Jersey home. Bent on revenge, Pietro pursues the killers and executes them a year later. Impressed by Pietros performance, David Locano recruits Pietro as a hit man. After more traumas, Pietro tries to make a break from his past by entering the witness protection program. Now known as Peter Brown, he eventually lands a position as a doctor at a decrepit Manhattan hospital, where by chance a former Mafia associate turns up as a patient and threatens to rat him out.

Another mob movie. I’ll be shock if DiCaprio doesn’t star in this one, too. Maybe he can even get Scorsese to direct. They can then change the title to “The Departed 2″ or something. Just a thought.