EXCLUSIVE: Sony Pictures is crossing swords with Chris Boal, signing the playwright and scribe to reboot its Zorro franchise. The reboot has been a Sony priority for some time, and the studio has Parkes/MacDonald’s Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald producing it. They are also spearheading the studio’s reboot of Men In Black. Lauren Abrahams is overseeing it for Sony and Marc Resteghini for P/M.
I’m told that the ambition of the movie is less traditional swashbuckler, and more of a Dark Knight-style unveiling of the character with a new backstory, gritty realism and emotional core. There will be swordplay, combined with the martial arts that came from Europe and created a deadly combination of action and lethal fighting systems that combined swords, daggers, grappling and bare knuckles. Boal was a competitive fencer on the national circuit before becoming a writer. He just adapted the sci-fi novel Old Man’s War for Paramount and producer Scott Stuber and Wolfgang Petersen, the Viking pic Vanguard for Warner Bros and Atlas for Alexander Skarsgaard to star, and Caesar for Warner Bros and Thunder Road. He’s repped by CAA, Madhouse Entertainment and attorney Sean Marks.