March 21, 2014

Sony Pictures is reportedly planning to make a big screen movie based at least in part on my (mis)adventures over the past few years as an independent investigative reporter writing about cybercrime. Some gumshoe I am: This took me by complete surprise.



The first inkling I had of this project came a few weeks ago when New York Times reporter Nicole Perlroth forwarded me a note she’d received from a Hollywood producer who was (and still is) apparently interested in acquiring my “life rights” for an upcoming film project. The producer reached out to The Times reporter after reading her mid-February 2014 profile of me, which chronicled the past year’s worth of reader responses from the likes of the very ne’er-do-wells I write about daily. Perlroth’s story began:

“In the last year, Eastern European cybercriminals have stolen Brian Krebs’s identity a half dozen times, brought down his website, included his name and some unpleasant epithets in their malware code, sent fecal matter and heroin to his doorstep, and called a SWAT team to his home just as his mother was arriving for dinner.”

I didn’t quite know what to make of the Hollywood inquiry at the time, and was so overwhelmed and distracted with travel and other matters that I neglected to follow up on it. Then, just yesterday, I awoke to a flurry of messages both congratulatory and incredulous on Twitter and Facebook regarding a story in The Hollywood Reporter:

“Sony has picked up the rights to the New York Times article ‘Reporting From the Web’s Underbelly,’ which focused on cyber security blogger Brian Krebs. Krebs, with his site, was the first person to expose the credit card breach at Target that shook the retail world in December.”

“Richard Wenk, the screenwriter who wrote Sony’s high-testing big-screen version of The Equalizer, is on board to write what is being envisioned as a cyber-thriller inspired by the article and set in the high-stakes international criminal world of cyber-crime.”

Judging from accounts of the screenwriter’s other movies, if this flick actually gets made someone vaguely resembling me probably will be kicking some badguy butt on the Silver Screen:

The Expendables 2: Sly Stallone gets revenge.
– The Mechanic: Jason Statham hits hard.
16 Blocks: Bruce Willis…well..Bruce Willises.
– The Equalizer (Fall 2014): Denzel Washington tries to hide from his past life of kicking butt.

I still have yet to work out the details with Sony, but beyond remuneration (and perhaps a fleeting Hitchcock-style cameo) I would be delighted if I could influence the selection of the leading man. In the past week, I’ve been told I look like both Jim Carrey and Guy Pearce, but I’m not so sure. But if I had to pick one of my favorite actors, I’d love to see Edward Norton in the role. What about you, dear readers? Sound off in the comments below.

Update, 8:24 p.m. ET: Minneapolis Star-Tribune reporter Jennifer Bjorhus managed to get confirmation from Sony that the studio was working on this film.

273 thoughts on “Sony Pictures Plans Movie About Yours Truly

  1. Hugh

    Sony? Really?
    Does the DVD come with a rootkit as usual?
    Methinks everyone forgot about Sony’s evilness.
    You too Brian.

  2. bob

    I thought this had been done – isn’t Mark Wahlberg’s character in Date Night based on you? 🙂

    Anyway, my vote for actor to play (and who looks like) Brian Krebs: Mark Wahlberg.

    1. FeiFei

      No, no, it was Mark Wahlberg’s character in Boogie Nights.

  3. KidRanger

    Benedict Cumberbatch? Are you really thinking we need another “The Fifth Estate?” Dude cannot carry a movie by himself. And Ed Norton flunked “The Hulk,” so its a “no” for him, too.

    I’m going with Matt Bomer (“White Collar’.) Smart and good looking, just like Krebs.

    1. Edward

      Matt Bomer would be great if you wanted a more refined, smart, less violent character. However, if you want to take it up a few notches I would suggest Jeffrey Donovan from Burn Notice.

  4. dave

    I would cast Michael J. Fox, but he may not be available. I guess Brad Pitt would be next in line.

  5. Ron Baklarz

    Brian – this is really cool – can’t wait for the picture. I suggest Aaron Paul (Jessie Pickman) from Breaking Bad.

  6. Tetration

    Matt Damon – I can see the movie playing out very similar to a Bourne flick – and he is quite good in that role – plus there is a slight resemblance too.

  7. SL

    The Hollywood version of the SWAT team incident goes like this: the SWAT team actually enters Krebs’ home, where his wife and kids are, and a shootout ensues as Krebs protects his family not knowing who the intruders are. Krebs gets hit and is taken to the hospital. Then they show the hackers hack into the hospital camera and watch Krebs dying on his bed, and they cheer when the heartbeat monitor flatlines. Then they go out to celebrate thinking their work is done. But then back at the hospital, Krebs gets out of the bed and starts laughing maniacally. Turns out Krebs had hacked the heartbeat monitor to show a flatline when he was really in stable condition.

  8. Elizabeth Safran

    Hah, when I saw the Hollywood reporter piece I was trying to think what actor would make a good you:-).

    Edward Norton rocks, and I see the Guy Pearce comparison. I’d also cast a vote for Viggo Mortensen (in platforms, since he is short). He doesn’t look like you but is a badass and awesome actor, I am sure he would do you justice:-). Or….Michael Fassbinder?

    Luxury problems:-)

  9. IA Eng

    Isn’t the book supposed to come out before the movie?

    1. IA Eng

      hey what happed to me parens….LOL….
      I said in parens…. smirk, i know the answer. Others may not.
      = )

  10. IA Eng

    Now if it is Bruce Willis, he has a serious side as well as a humorous side, like in Die Hard. Imagine that – his last Die hard movies was about….. hackers and infiltration of US Funds…

    I’d go see it if BW is in it.

    = )

  11. Russian Hacker

    I think the best person to represent you Krebs on Hollywood is the porn actor Peter North!

  12. Shredder

    Got to be Jason Statham, for sure.
    Kicking-ass and not bothering to take names.
    Just like Krebsy himself.
    In all seriousness congratulations, I hope the movie actually gets made.

  13. Michael

    Edward Norton
    Jesse Eisenburg
    Aron Paul
    Michael C. Hall
    Conan O’Brien

  14. notalenthack

    All the suggestions are good ones, but this being Hollywood, the script will probably go through several rewrites, and ultimately become a starring vehicle for Sally Field, Will Farrell, or Kermit the Frog.

  15. therotintheroot

    Are you going to do your first nude scene?

  16. M

    Negtotiate a link to your website in the credits in the same font size as the lead actor’s credit and another link on the movie’s website and any physical packaging so it doesn’t mess up your pagerank too bad.

    And who cares what the actor looks like if they can act well? I would ask for Donald Glover if I were you.

  17. JSD

    Oh come on!! It has to be Will Ferrel. I know what you’re going to say and you’re right of course, but think again. Did you think again? See? Eh? I’m right aren’t I. Perfect. O.K. Drama with jokes: I can’t wait to see it.

  18. Nicola

    Great. Maybe Hollywood will succeed where govts of UK & USA have failed and get corporations to take cyber security seriously.

  19. Janis

    Definitely Matt Damon as he appears in Jason Bourne trilogy. It looks like, it should feel like also.

  20. Eddie Ski

    No for Norton, doesn’t come across as “investigative” or “thorough” in the characters he’s portrayed.
    I like Statham but as an action anti-hero, think Snatch. Not as Krebs.
    Maybe an up-comer like Bryce Johnson. Ryan Gosling could play you but I doubt pull off the humor.
    I think Mark Ruffalo is pretty good as investigator.

    Congratulations Brian! I hope this comes to Netflix! (sorry, I ain’t spending $12 to know what we already know!)

  21. Getreal

    Ed Norton would bring to the role the grit of Brian, the cyber hunter

  22. Dave

    They should just make this a Bourne movie. I’m sure the real life action is similar anyway.

    But could we get Chuck Norris to play Bruce Schneier at least as a cameo?

  23. Managed Services

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