Fox Secures Rights To ‘The Secret Service,’ Directed By Matthew Vaughn; November 2014 Release Planned [UPDATED]
Posted on Wednesday, March 27th, 2013 by Germain Lussier
UPDATE: Exhibitor Relations reports a November 14, 2014 release has been set.
When Matthew Vaughn dropped out of X-Men: Days of Future Past, many speculated it was because the Star Wars Episode VII job was up for grabs. That may or may not have been the case, but Mark Millar came out and said Vaughn’s departure from X-Men was to collaborate on a project called The Secret Service. Millar wasn’t lying.
20th Century Fox just secured the rights to The Secret Service, based on a comic by Mark Millar and Dave Gibbons, adapted by Matthew Vaughn and Jane Goldman, and directed by Vaughn. The comic and the movie follow an older secret service agent who acts as mentor to a new recruit. Fox will reportedly fast track the film, hoping to have it in theaters in 2014.
The news of the deal broke at Deadline, which says Universal (which is distributing Kick-Ass 2, produced by Millar and Vaughn) was in the mix for the project. Ultimately, staying at Fox makes sense as that’s where Millar currently hangs his hat. He’s employed as a kind of overseer to the studios Marvel franchises. This does not fit under that umbrella, but it’s a comic book property and it’s his. Filming will likely start in August.
The Secret Service was a five issue mini-series, co-created by Millar and Gibbons, which started last summer and just wrapped up earlier this month. Millar described the book as follows:
The Secret Service is the ramifications of [how] America is struggling on the world stage. Funding is being seriously undercut to balance the books and some people are trying their best to take advantage of the fragile global situation. The Hero—and sidekick guys who lead the book are – I think, the best characters I’ve written.
And here’s what he said in November 2012 about why he and Vaughn were so passionate about getting the project done asap:
What we’re doing is that ‘Kick-Ass 2? is filming now, and next year we’ll start production on ‘Secret Service’ which I did with Dave Gibbons, and Matthew and I have been talking about that for years. We thought Matthew was going to do X-Men first, but we found out there were actually a few imitators of ‘Secret Service’ in the works. People think you’re lying when you say you’re not trying to get your comics made into movies so quickly, but the two reasons it happens like that is first because it’s the best ad for the comic you’ll ever have. And for me, selling the book is the most important thing. The second reason is because people are always trying to rip you off. Somebody will start to work on a spec screenplay about your idea. There are three other projects I know of now about a James Bond kind of guy taking a street kid and turning him into a spy. Three screenplays were already going through Hollywood about this! So Matthew and I said, ‘F*ck this. We’re not letting anyone steal our ideas.’
Have you read the comics? Is Vaughn a good fit? Are you excited this is his next project?
Fox’s THE SECRET SERVICE will drop 11/14/14. Matthew Vaughn directs from Mark Millar (“Kick-Ass”) & Dave Gibbons’ comic series.
— Exhibitor Relations (@ERCboxoffice) March 27, 2013