Liam Neeson will follow in the footsteps of many hard-boiled men before him to play the legendary private-eye Philip Marlowe, previously embodied by the likes of Dick Powell, Humphrey Bogart, Elliott Gould, and Robert Mitchum. Variety reports that Neeson is going to tackle the role in a film titled, well, Marlowe, which is based on not one Raymond Chandler’s novels, but The Black-Eyed Blonde, a more recent work by Benjamin Black. (Black is a pseudonym for John Banville.) The plot follows Marlowe as he investigates the case of a woman’s missing former lover—you know, your usual noir stuff.
William Monahan of The Departed fame is writing the screenplay for the project, and told Variety: “It’s hard to tell who has the more of a lion’s heart and soul, Philip Marlowe or Liam Neeson. I hope I’ve done the both of them and a picture I could not anticipate more some service.” Indeed, Neeson’s weary gruffness does seem like a great, growly fit.