By Simon Dang | The Playlist June 13, 2011 at 1:19AM
Disney, Kathryn Bigelow and Peter Berg, take a seat. You've all been beaten to the punch for a film centering on the Navy SEALs, the defence force division whisked into the global spotlight after taking down the world's most wanted man, Osama Bin Laden.
Relativity Media has just paid $13 million and committed $30 million to P&A for an already-shot, little-known project by the L.A.-based Bandito Brothers (seriously, that's the name of the production shingle) Mike "Mouse" McCoy and Scott Waugh, titled "Act Of Valor" starring real-life, active-duty Navy SEALs, with a President's Day release next year already being plotted.
Would this picture have ever made any headlines if its lead characters weren't inadvertently linked to the killing of Bin Laden? Probably not, but when something's hot in Hollywood, it's very hot.
Scripted by Kurt Johnstad ("300"), "Act Of Valor" follows "a Navy Seal squad on a covert mission to recover a kidnapped CIA agent, that in the process takes down a complex web of terrorist cells determined to strike America at all costs." Apparently, the filmmakers' "unprecedented Naval access" results in "high-octane combat sequences and never-before-seen military operation scenes which are composited from actual events in the lives of the men appearing in the film and their comrades."
Roselyn Sanchez ("Rush Hour 2") and Emilio Rivera ("Traffic") are noted to be two actual actors in the pic, which will now trump Bigelow's planned "Kill Bin Laden" starring Joel Edgerton and Berg's "Lone Survivor" with Taylor Kitsch -- both of which also center on Navy SEALs. Disney, meanwhile, quickly tried to trademark the term "SEAL Team 6" hours after Bin Laden's reported death, but gave up the endeavor after facing some heat from military types.
We're not expecting anything substantial from the Bandito Brothers duo who seemingly scored the collaboration and backing of the defence forces after shooting recruitment videos -- this doesn't sound too different from a 100 minute recruitment video, described as "very patriotic and heavy on action" as well as “a hybrid feature film based on the SEAL ethos that highlights both naval special warfare capability and fleet interaction.” Here's a few more set photos of the project, which shot as early as 2009, courtesy of The Tension (via TheFilmStage).