From a graphic novel adaptation and found footage-Amblin homage to another zombie apocalypse and a Chinese mythology inspired action adventure, here’s a round up of recent spec script sales in Hollywood.
Despite the recent financial failure of “John Carter” and the problems currently plaguing Gore Verbinksi’s “The Lone Ranger” adaptation, Disney is already looking towards future tentpoles. It’s being reported that the mouse house has made a deal for an adaptation of the graphic novel “Stuff Of Legend.” The source material, written by Mike Raicht and Brian Smith and illustrated by Charles Paul Wilson III, follows a young boy in 1944 who “is abducted by the Boogeyman, dragged by the ankles into the closet realm known as The Dark. The boy’s puppy rallies his toys to follow his master in a rescue mission. Once in the closet, each of those toys become menacingly large and agile creatures who engage in a war with the Boogeyman’s forces.” Truth be told, the concept does sound like it could be an interesting children’s film, but apparently Disney wants to make the movie in the mold of their 2010 monster hit, the abysmal “Alice In Wonderland,” a live-action film set in a completely CGI world. Pete Candeland, an animation veteran, is attached to direct with a script by Shawn Christensen (“Abduction”). [Deadline]
Just in time for the 30th anniversary of the film that gave Amblin its logo ("E.T."), DreamWorks won a bidding war to buy the rights to a script that “is described as Amblin-esque and involves teens and time travel.” The spec script, done in the style of found-footage films, was written by Carter Blanchard and is being kept under wraps. After the successful release of “Chronicle” this year, which saw the found-footage aesthetic applied to the superhero film, it was only a matter of time until a different type of film was done in the same style. [Hollywood Reporter]
Universal, fresh off the turd that is “Battleship” and the more lukewarm “Snow White and the Huntsman,” has bought the rights to the Larry Brenner-written “Bethlehem.” The Black List script follows "a group of people struggling to survive a zombie apocalypse who make an alliance with a vampire, trading themselves as food in exchange for protection since zombies don’t eat vampires." Cedric Nicolas-Troyan, who did second unit work on “Snow White and the Huntsman,” will be making his feature-length directorial debut. [Deadline]
Warner Bros. has bought the rights to the action adventure project “Temple of Heaven.” Chad St. John (the upcoming Albert Hughes-directed “Motor City”) has been hired to flesh out an idea from former Disney executives Jason Reed and Michael Andreen into an outline. The film will reportedly weave aspects of Chinese mythology into an action adventure framework. The project is another step that studios are making in an effort to court the large overseas Chinese market. Perhaps learning a thing or two from their favorite son, Christopher Nolan, the studio is keeping mum about any other details about the project. [Deadline]