Update: J. Blakeson, who made a great directorial debut in 2009 with "The Disappearance of Alice Creed," has lined up his sophomore effort, a film about the life of Alan Turing.
Blakeson has been hired to helm "The Imitation Game," reported Variety. Warner Bros. bought the rights last fall to the script by first-timer Graham Moore, which he adapted from Andrew Hodges' biography, "Alan Turing; The Enigma."
The studio had ponied up on the strength of the universally-hailed script and DiCaprio's interest in taking the lead, but he's since committed to "The Wolf of Wall Street" with Martin Scorsese.
Alan Turing stands as one of the great minds of the 20th Century, and like many who are as brilliant as he was, the man was a tortured soul, whose inner turmoil was made worse by the disgusting persecution he suffered at the hands of the very government he so heroically helped to save. Turing is, in short, a fantastic subject for a film.
Turing laid much of the early groundwork for modern computers, and was one of the heroes of WW II, helping crack the German's Enigma code. But he was later forced by the British government to undergo chemical castration as punishment for his homosexuality, and ultimately killed himself by eating a cyanide-laced apple, which according to legend was the inspiration for the name of Steve Jobs' company, a story that has been denied repeatedly.
Big name directors like David Yates and Ron Howard had previously been in the mix, but fell out for a variety of reasons. We're thrilled for Blakeson, who's a pretty talented guy with lots of promise.