There aren't many true horror fiction classics that are begging for a new film adaptation, but Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray is one of them. And now it will be happening, according to Digital Spy, which reported earlier today that a British movie is in the works.
Despite the fact that the novel (Wilde's only one) has been adapted for the small and large screen on 13 different occasions over the past century, there's really only one that's considered to be worthy of mention. That's the 1945 production starring Hurd Hatfield in the title role, along with Peter Lawford, Donna Reed and a young Angela Lansbury, back when was hot (if such a thing is imaginable). And it's not even available on DVD, believe it or not.
This new adaptation will be directed by Oliver Parker, who previously adapted Wilde's stage plays An Ideal Husband and The Importance of Being Earnest for the screen. The story of a vain and corrupt man who puts off his own aging process by transferring his age into a painting of himself, Dorian Gray is decidedly darker material than Wilde's stage work, and Parker acknowledges that, saying he is "going for the horror-thriller angle of the story. It's different [from] adapting one of Wilde's plays."
Parker is no stranger to horror, having played roles in the first two Hellraiser films, as well as Nightbreed, another Clive Barker project. This one could be very interesting.