EXCLUSIVE: Buck Rogers, the fighter pilot who wakes up in the 25th Century, is being relaunched as a 3D screen hero. Paul WS Anderson has locked a deal to direct a new version of the classic tale of a fighter pilot who quickly acclimates to the future and puts his skills to use defending the planet against invaders. The character launched in the 1920s and has been the subject of comic books, radio and movie serials, and two TV series, the latter of which ran on NBC and starred Gil Gerard.
Iron Man scribes Art Marcum and Matt Holloway will write the screenplay.
The Buck Rogers rights are controlled by Paradox, the company behind a new version of Conan the Barbarian that is currently shooting in Bulgaria with Marcus Nispel directing Jason Momoa in a Nu Image/Millennium Films production. Paradox will finance the Buck Rogers development, and Anderson’s longtime partner, Jeremy Bolt, is producing with Fredrik Malmberg,with Larry Abramson and George Furla. They will lock in financing when they lock a script, though buyers have been aware of the project since it started getting talked up during last year’s Cannes Film Festival. It is one of the few branded properties that hasn’t been gobbled up by a studio.
Anderson, who is working on another classic property with a new version of The Three Musketeers–Constantin is financing, Summit is North American distributor and international sales agent, and Anderson is casting for a fall shoot–has a knack for launching films that go back for repeat installments. That includes Resident Evil, Aliens Vs. Predators, and most most recently a remake of Death Race, a second installment of which is now in production. ICM repped Anderson and the writers.