Devolution

Legendary Entertainment has acquired the screen rights to Devolution, a new book by World War Z author Max Brooks. The book, which just hit shelves today, is subtitled “A Firsthand Account of the Rainier Sasquatch Massacre,” and is Brooks’ exploration of the legend of Bigfoot.

Oddly, this isn’t the first time Legendary has been associated with this project. Get the details below.

The Hollywood Reporter brings word that Legendary has picked up the rights to Brooks’ new book, though it’s unclear if a film or TV adaptation is being planned. The outlet also reminds us that the company has actually worked with Brooks on this story in the past. In 2012, Legendary hired Brooks, Lost director Jack Bender, and writer David Leslie Johnson (Wrath of the TitansThe Walking Dead) to develop the concept, but Brooks ultimately decided he wanted to write it as book first. With that step now completed, Legendary is still interested in the idea – though neither Bender nor Johnson are on board anymore.

Here’s how THR describes the story of Devolution:

The story is set in a model eco-community town in the shadow of Mt. Rainier that, in the aftermath of a volcanic eruption, is rampaged by ferocious beasts known as the Sasquatch. The tale is told via the lens of town resident Kate Holland. It is described as “part survival narrative, part bloody horror tale, part scientific journey into the boundaries between truth and fiction.”

Like World War Z before it, this book is partially told from the perspective of a fictional version of Brooks himself; in that book, the premise is that he travelled the world interviewing survivors of the zombie apocalypse, and in Devolution, he’s conducting a scientific investigation into the Bigfoot tales and reproducing the fictional Kate Holland’s journal entries alongside his work. Brooks, who is the son of comedian Mel Brooks, wrote for Saturday Night Live for a couple of years in the early 2000s and also has a “story by” credit on the 2016 movie The Great Wall.

World War Z was adapted into a 2013 movie starring Brad Pitt, which had a troubled production and ultimately ended up making more than $540 million worldwide. Fans of the book were disappointed that the movie slimmed down the scope of the story to a more traditional narrative, but since Devolution seems to be a more focused story, perhaps that same issue won’t be a problem in this adaptation.

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