A new poker movie is coming out featuring Oscar Isaac and written/directed by Paul Schrader, who is most known as the author of the screenplay for Taxi Driver. "The Card Counter" is tagged as a revenge-thriller about a poker pro named William Tell (Oscar Isaac) who is a military veteran that tries to talk out a former
According to Variety, HanWay Films acquired international rights that's produced by Braxton Pope and Lauren Mann.
In a press release, HanWay's managing director Gabrielle Stewart said, "Schrader is a master of economical and cinematic story-telling. This is essentially an unlikely and surprising three-hander that weaves together the entertaining world of gambling; a potent and personal revenge thriller; unafraid to ask some extremely current and uncomfortable questions. Isaac's Tell is set to be a modern, iconic anti-hero, unmistakably drawn by this genius screenwriter."
In The Card Counter, William Tell invites Cirk, an old and former military colleague, to join him on the poker circuit as he makes his way to Las Vegas to play in the World Series of Poker. The younger vet wants to enact revenge on their former Colonel, but Tell tries to talk Cirk out of it while trying to find redemption in saving him.
Schrader is most famous for writing or co-writing several Martin Scorsese films including Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, and The Last Temptation of Christ.
Schrader re-emerged on the scene with his indie film First Reformed (2017) with Ethan Hawke as a priest who spirals into his own despair. Schrader wrote and directed First Reformed. He earned a best screenplay nomination but he did not win the Oscar.
Schrader reunited his cinematographer and editor for his new project The Card Counter.
Initially, Schrader was supposed to work on a western film. Instead, he's running with the poker movie with Oscar Isaac.
Isaac is most famous these days for his role in the Star Wars franchise including the soon-to-be releases Rise of Skywalker. He recently finished filming Dune. He also appeared in Ex Machina, A Most Violent Year, Annihilation, and The Bourne Legacy.
Isaac also played a beatnik folkie in the Coen Brothers film Inside Llewyn Davis. The Coens picked Isaac because he played guitar and could do his own singing. If Isaac is super committed to his role in The Card Counter, he's probably holed up somewhere playing poker in an underground game in the backroom of a dim sum joint in Chinatown.
Last month, Vince Van Patten's new film debuted on streaming services. It's more of a movie about degen gamblers and prop bettors than it's a movie about poker. VVP's friends bet that he could not walk from LA to Las Vegas in less than a week and that's the film aptly titled 7 Days to Vegas.
Mississippi Grind is the best poker movie to hit the big screen in a very long time. It's gotten a lot of love in the poker community, but then again poker fiends will love almost any mainstream entertainment that has anything remotely to do with poker. Well, except that turd Runner Runner. Aside from that, most of the poker world eats up a poker movie.
Nothing will ever top Rounders, but it's cool to see someone attempt to make one. If anyone can pull off a gritty film set against the poker world, it's the guy who penned Taxi Driver. That's a guy who knows how to tap into the dark side of humanity and we all know the poker world is the opposite of rainbows, unicorns, and moonbeams.