The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine, Michael Lewis’ nonfiction thriller and tell-all about the financial crisis, is reportedly being made into a star-studded film. According to Variety, Brad Pitt, Christian Bale, and Ryan Gosling have all signed on for the big-screen adaptation by Paramount and Plan B Entertainment, Pitt’s film production company. Adam McKay, the longtime Will Ferrell collaborator known for Anchorman and Talladega Nights, will write and direct.
The Big Short tells the story of the housing bubble through the eyes of Michael Burry, a 32-year-old neurologist-turned-investor and one-eyed eccentric who spotted the subprime-mortgage crisis early and made a huge bet against it. While Wall Street sliced, diced, and bundled rotten assets, Burry pored over hundreds of prospectuses for questionable bonds. The big reveal at the end (spoiler alert!): Burry had Asperger’s syndrome and for a long time was totally unaware of it. “Only someone who has Asperger’s would read a subprime-mortgage-bond prospectus,” he tells Lewis.
Pitt also starred in and, through Plan B, produced the film adaptation of Moneyball, another nonfiction work by Lewis that chronicles the metrics-based efforts of Oakland Athletics General Manager Billy Beane to assemble a competitive team on a limited budget. The production timeline for The Big Short remains unknown, but Variety reports that Pitt has been “very passionate” about making it happen. In the meantime, we’ll wait to see which actor gets to play the half-blind hedge funder who took down Wall Street.