Sniff, A Film Noir Set In A Retirement Home, Will Star Morgan Freeman And Al Pacino

What do you get when you put Morgan Freeman, Al Pacino, Dame Helen Mirren, and Danny DeVito in a retirement community together? A film noir, of course. The four actors, all of whom have received Academy Award nominations or wins over the course of their illustrious careers, will appear in "Sniff," the latest film from director Taylor Hackford.

THR reports that "Sniff" is launching sales at the 46th Toronto International Film Festival, which kicks off this Friday, September 10, 2021.

Rian Johnson's "Brick" famously used a high school as an unlikely noir setting, and "Sniff" will be going to the opposite end of the age spectrum, framing its noir around septua- and octogenarians. It sounds like the spirit of Detective Somerset, Freeman's character in "Seven," and Alex Cross, his character in "Kiss the Girls" and "Along Came a Spider," will live on in "Sniff" in the form of a retired police detective who gets drawn into a mystery.

Hackford, who served as president of the DGA (Director's Guild of America) and is known for his work in "Ray" and "An Officer and a Gentleman," happens to be married to Mirren and has directed her before in "Love Ranch." For "Sniff," he'll also be re-teaming with Pacino after "The Devil's Advocate," their 1997 supernatural thriller, in which Pacino squared off against Keanu Reeves.

A Wish List of Actors

Deadline reveals that "Sniff" is penned by Tom Grey, a first-time screenwriter, and that the title is an acronym for "Senior Nursing Institute & Family Foundation." Hackford is reportedly a big fan of film noir, and because of his industry contacts and spousal connection with Mirren, this is one of those rare projects where the writer's wish list of actors all wound up signing on, making his dream come true.

The idea of a noir set in a retirement community is an interesting one, especially in a business that is as obsessed with youth and beauty as Hollywood is. If nothing else, it's good to see these actors getting some work and combining their talents in one project. 

Hackford will produce "Sniff" through his company, Anvil Films, with Adam Goodman and Matt Skiena of Dichotomy Creative Group co-producing. Here's the synopsis via THR:

When two residents die under suspicious circumstances, retired detective Joe Mulwray (Freeman) is pulled back into the action by his former partner William Keys (DeVito) as they uncover a hidden underworld of sex, drugs, and murder in the high-end, luxury retirement community controlled by kingpin Harvey Stride (Pacino) and his femme fatale enforcer, the Spider (Mirren).