As most of us know by now, the January release of “Chronicle” marked one of those rare moments when critical and commercial success combines for a genre picture of that ilk. While a sequel has already been announced with original screenwriter Max Landis at work once again, director Josh Trank has been tossed around for some higher profile gigs including the “Spider-Man” spinoff “Venom," but he's now locked a deal for what could be his next film.
Deadline reports that Warner Brothers has selected Trank to helm the graphic novel adaptation “The Red Star” under “21 Jump Street” producer Neal Moritz’s production shingle Original Film. With a script in the works by Jason Rothenberg, who also penned the gestating Matt Reeves-directed feature film reboot of “The Twilight Zone,” “The Red Star” by Christian Gossett is a sci-fi fantasy series picked up by the studio over the summer, that is set in an alternative universe Russia where the USSR still rules supreme with high-tech weaponry and…magic (?). The first few issues of the comic follow a woman who’s recalling her husband’s battles within an epic-sized war, complete with wizards, steam punk weaponry, and mythical Gods. Yes, it has it all.
While the comic seems like something that might work better on the screen than on the page, just bear in mind it has been adapted already (sort of), into a videogame (see below). If Trank and Rosenberg streamline it to make a coherent film, it could certainly be an intriguing venture -- if not it’ll be kind of like “Sucker Punch.” Let’s hope for the former, as Trank is a talent we have our eye on, and of all the projects he’s been linked to, "The Red Star" sounds most like the one he could really flex his creative muscles with.
This project has been in development for years (it was previously set up at Universal as a vehicle for Timur Bekmambetov with Matthew Sand ("Ninja Assassin") penning the script) but producer Moritz proved he knows how to assemble a creative team with “21 Jump Street,” so let’s see if those wheels are turning all over again once this one starts inching closer to production.