Prematurely, as it turned out.
It was an easy mistake to make. Adam Wingard and Simon Barrett tend to come as a double act. Barrett has penned the script for nearly half of Wingard's sixteen movies - 7 in total - including the one that they're working on right now (The Woods).
When they're not doing the director/writer thing, they're acting together, as in the movie 24 Exposures. Or doing something randomly appreciated in the background. (Barrett received thanks in the credits of Wingard's Home Sick. It didn't say why.)
In short, it's a bona fide bromance. Where one goes the other generally follows. We might as well imagine Mello without Matt, as Wingard without Barrett. So pretty much everyone presumed that Adam's appointment - as director of the Death Note US live action movie - meant that Simon would be writing the script.
He's not. He's outed himself as Death Note dumped on Twitter, after returning from a long day's filming on The Woods to find his social media straining under the weight of the fandom. An explosion of Death Note homies rushing to congratulate him on a plumb job snatched and landed.
Except he hasn't. Wingard's doing the big one without him. Poor love.
Contrary to the previous situation with Gus van Sant - last director in the frame - we do have some indication that Wingard is genuinely involved in our Death Note US live action film. No frustrating silence there, he Tweeted a link to Hollywood Reporter article breaking the news; followed Manga US (and Todd Masters - Monster maker. Filmmaker. Creative Dude. - dunno if that is related); then finished up two days later with this lovely message:
For now, I'm grinning right along in support and assuming that the director of V.H.S., The Guest and You're Next is going to give us a Death Note that is suitably dark.
(Or, at this stage, is it down to just 'give us a Death Note' in live action form? Considers how bad that could possibly be given a Disney-esque filter or a non-ambiguous good guy/bad guy, black and white lens... No, I'd rather do without, if the only shades of grey allowed in Hollywood these days are the obligatory fifty of Christian's whip.)
Though with Simon Barrett's potential script already lost from the running, we can only assume that Adam Wingard will be working from the one already written and erstwhile gathering dust on the table. The original (give or take a dozen drafts and rewrites to date) penned by Anthony Bagarozzi and Chuck Mondry, based on an earlier version - vetoed by Warner Bros - by Charley and Vlas Parlapanides.
Excepting Charley, all three are still listed by IMDb as the US Death Note scriptwriters, but they've since been joined by Fantastic Four screenplay writer Jeremy Slater. He was also responsible for The Lazarus Effect.
In short, is this still the script turned down by Shane Black as being too ridiculous to contemplate? Or has Slater reinserted the Shinigami and returned Light to being the God of this New (or in our case, quite old and familiar now) World? I guess time will tell whether we'll be pleased, or sobbing over could have beens before a silver screen resolutely not listing Simon Barrett's credit.