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UNTRACEABLE

About The Production
When producers Tom Rosenberg and Gary Lucchesi first read the script by Robert Fyvolent and Mark Brinker that would eventually become Untraceable, the timeliness of its story made it irresistible. "The cyber-crime unit of the FBI is relatively new,” says Lucchesi. "It was established just six or seven years ago. Untraceable focuses on a case that is unusual because it doesn't deal with child abuse or credit card theft. It deals with somebody who's actually committing a murder and using the Internet to facilitate it. The public is watching and the more people who tune in, the faster the victim dies.”

While the Internet is a fount of useful information and entertainment, its anonymity gives it the potential to stoke unhealthy curiosity, says Lucchesi. "A lot of us open up our computers and look at the news, but at least as many look at the gossip: Which young movie star got arrested last night or has gone after a photographer or is having sex with somebody he or she shouldn't? We've become a public that's fueled by Internet information. One of the things that the movie asks us is, if a violent crime was being committed, would you watch it? Would you watch it if no one knew?” 

To develop the script, Rosenberg and Lucchesi, who are chairman and president, respectively, of Lakeshore Entertainment, brought in screenwriter Allison Burnett, with whom they had worked on Lakeshore's Feast of Love starring Morgan Freeman, Greg Kinnear and Radha Mitchell. 

"Allison is more of a dramatic writer, but we thought his understanding of characters would work really well for this thriller,” Lucchesi says. "He's very forthcoming with ideas and quick in terms of execution. He knocked it out of the park.” 

Together, the producers and Burnett focused on creating the story's main characters and the relationships between them—while also working hard to make sure the film remained in the realm of the technologically possible. "It was very much a collaboration,” says Lucchesi. "The two of us sat with him and went through the screenplay page by page.” During this phase, Burnett added a complex and convincing back story for the murderer and fleshed out the central character of Jennifer Marsh, the role that Diane Lane would play. 

Satisfied the script was ready for the big screen, Rosenberg and Lucchesi turned their attention to finding the right director to bring it to life. They sent the script to Gregory Hoblit and his frequent collaborator, producer Howard "Hawk” Koch, Jr., who most recently teamed up on the thriller Fractured, starring Anthony Hopkins and Ryan Gosling. Hoblit's impressive résumé also includes the feature Primal Fear, as well as episodes of television series "NYPD Blue” and "Hill Street Blues.”

The director's relationship to law enforcement goes beyond his Hollywood career, however. "His father was an FBI agent,” says Lucchesi. "So we thought, ‘Who better to direct a movie about an FBI agent?'” As Koch recalls, "My initial reaction to the script was: ‘Wow, this is a page turner!' Really now and really exciting. I'd never done anything like it.” 

Once he read the screenplay, Hoblit immediately knew he wanted to tackle the film. "The script takes a look at a whole new world,” says the director. "Cyber-crime came to become a vital unit within the FBI only a few years ago. Now there's an entire floor dedicated to nothing but cyber-crime in the Federal Building in Portland.” 

Hoblit's meticulous attention to detail made him an ideal choice for the movie, says Koch. "If you're going to do a movie about cyber detectives, then you better know your subject matter. We really investigated the technical stuff so hopefully all the cyber geeks out there will appreciate its authenticity.” 

During the years he worked as a director and producer on the television series "NYPD Blue” and "Hill Street Blues,” Hoblit<

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