20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Briefly: While the odds of ever getting to see a David Fincher version of 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea are now slim to none, an alternate version of the tale has just been purchased. Sony Pictures has purchased a spec script called Captain Nemo, written by Alfred Gough and Miles Millar. The pair are best known for co-creating the hit Superman show Smallville, but also worked on the scripts for films such as Spider-Man 2 (the good one, from Sam Raimi), Shanghai Noon and I Am Number Four.

The script, which will be produced by Maleficent team Joe Roth and Palak Patel, tells a “a new take on the iconic antihero who was first introduced to readers in 1870 in Jules Verne’s Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea.” [The Hollywood Reporter]

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The Sword of Shannara, from author Terry Brooks, is kind of a cold-war revision of J.R.R. Tolkien’s ideas. The book features all the fantasy trappings of Tolkien’s novels — so much so that critics dinged Brooks for rampant borrowing — but gives it all a nuclear origin, as the novels take place thousands of years after apocalyptic wars mutated mankind into elves and dwarves, and changed the geographic layout of Earth.

The book was also very successful, and it spawned two direct sequels and ultimately became the thing that dominates Brooks’ career — he’s got more Shannara books set for 2014 and 2015, almost 40 years after the publication of his first. With all the interest in YA and fantasy novel properties from studios since The Lord of the Rings was a success, it is possibly only the very Tolkien-lite characteristics of Shannara that have kept the books from being adapted. Not that people haven’t tried, as producers who started working with the rights in 2007 have now hit pay dirt.

MTV is now developing Shannara, a TV series, with Jon Favreau signed to direct the pilot. Read More »

ABC may have found its Angels. After an exhaustive search, Minka Kelly and Rachael Taylor are now finalizing negotiations to star alongside Annie Ilonzeh in the Charlie’s Angels television reboot, which is being overseen by Smallville creators Al Gough and Miles Millar.

You probably won’t recognize Ilonzeh, as her most notable role before now was on General Hospital. But Kelly and Taylor should be familiar, the former having starred in Friday Night Lights and the upcoming The Roommate, and the latter appearing in Transformers and Shutter. Learn more about their characters after the break. Read More »

Disney Developing ‘Hovercar 3D’

Revisiting The Wachowski’s Speed Racer on DVD, I have wondered if the movie was released a couple years later and filmed in 3D, if it would have been a hit. Well it looks like we might find out, and this time without the hokey characters.

Walt Disney Pictures is developing Hovercar 3D, based on an online serial which resulted in a popular young-adult book series from the Australian novelist Matthew Reilly. The film project is being described as “a live-action techno-thriller” which follows a hovercar racer “tasked with escorting an informant to safety as the two come under fire from corrupt government operatives.” The books have often been compared with Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game or Harry Potter.

Read More »

paramount3

Assuming that the majority of this information is valid, there are going to be about two dozen worth of news stories crammed in one here, so brace yourselves.

According to a leaked email exposing Paramount’s upcoming movie slate, they’re going to be pretty busy over the next few years, working on a slew of potentially promising projects that are either set to go ahead or awaiting further script developments. Find out which of their films you have to look forward to after the break. Read More »

dianna-agron-i-am-number-four

The film adaptation of I Am Number Four, the first book in a sci-fi novel series co-authored by James Frey, became a big deal pretty fast. First it was because the film was rumored to be set up as a project for Michael Bay to produce and, possibly, direct.

Then DJ Caruso (Eagle Eye, Disturbia) was tapped to direct, with Bay and Steven Spielberg producing. Actors have steadily been added to the film, and now we’ve got one more: Dianna Agron, who has had insane exposure in the last year thanks to her role on Glee. Read More »

Alex Pettyfer in I Am Number 4

Alex Pettyfer

Alex Rider: Operation Stormbreaker and Beastly star Alex Pettyfer is in talks to play the lead character in Dreamworks’ Michael Bay/Steven Spielberg-produced D.J. Caruso-directed teen sci-fi alien adaptation I Am Number 4.

The screenplay adaptation was written by Smallville creators Al Gough and Miles Millar, which kind of makes sense if you think about it (teenage aliens that fall from space to earth?). Caruso is of course the director responsible for Taking Lives, The Salton Sea, Two for the Money and more recently, Disturbia and Eagle Eye. Bay has previously been developing the project as a potential directing gig.
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Warner Bros has hired new screenwriters for their big screen live-action adaptation of Robotech. Smallville scribes Alfred Gough and Miles Millar have come on board to rewrite Lawrence Kasdan‘s previous draft. This is not good news. Gough and Millar were the team behind The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, Herbie Fully Loaded, Made Men, Showtime, and the Shanghai Noon franchise (you remember, the Jackie Chan/Owen Wilson western comedy films?). To be fair, they got a story credit on Spider-Man 2...

And to think, Warner Bros gave those two guys the job of rewriting a script penned by the the screenwriting legend responsible for both Raiders of the Lost Ark and Empire Strikes Back. It’s mind-boggling. The Hollywood Reporter claims that Warner Bros made the move in hopes that it will “bring action and geek cred to the table.”

Geek cred?

The guys who made Smallville?

Really?

Robotech refers to the scientific advances discovered in an alien starship that crashed on a South Pacific island. With this technology, Earth developed giant robotic machines or mecha (many of which were capable of transforming into vehicles) to fight three successive extraterrestrial invasions. At the time of its broadcast, Harmony Gold also launched Robotech through a popular line of comics to be followed by novels, role-playing games, video games, comic books, toys, and other consumer products.

Discuss: How badly will Gough and Millar ruin Robotech?

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