Timur Bekmambetov Wanted By MGM For 'Ben-Hur' Remake

Timur Bekmambetov might be making the leap from vampire-slaying presidents to avenging Jewish princes if he can work out a deal with MGM. Deadline reports the studio not only wants to remake the classic, with Timur Bekmambetov (Wanted, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter) directing.

The 1959 Charlton Heston vehicle was itself a remake of a 1925 silent film based on the 1880 novel called Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace. Directed by William Wyler, the 1959 film earned 11 Academy Awards.

MGM snatched up a Ben-Hur script by Keith Clarke (The Way Back) in January. The new script is said to take cues from the novel while also going its own way. It will focus on main characters Judah Ben-Hur and Messala, going back to their younger days as friends up to the iconic chariot race. Additionally, the new script will feature Judah's interactions with Jesus Christ.

MGM and Bekmambetov are still in talks.

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