EXCLUSIVE: Looking to get more mileage out of its relationship with Furious 7 star Tyrese Gibson, Universal Pictures has optioned Desert Eagle, an action spec scripted by Gibson and Mike Le. The plan is for it to serve as a star vehicle for the actor-musician. They’ve hired Matthew Stuecken and Josh Campbell to rewrite the script. Ted 2‘s Scott Stuber will produce via his Bluegrass Films banner. Gibson will be exec producer through his Voltron Filmz.
In Desert Eagle, a pair of border patrol agents investigate a drug cartel being operated out of a Native American reservation casino. Gibson last starred in 2013’s Fast & Furious 6, which grossed $788 million worldwide, as well as Fox Searchlight’s Black Nativity. Aside from reprising his Roman Pierce role in Furious 7, he co-stars with Jake Gyllenhaal in the Antoine Fuqua-directed Southpaw and opposite Kevin Hart and Ice Cube in the Tim Story-directed Ride Along 2. His final album, Black Rose, will be released May 5.
Le wrote the Black List script Patient Zero, which is casting up quickly at Screen Gems, and also Dark Summer, which is about to be released by IFC Midnight. Gibson and Le are exec producers of the web series K-Town and Roll Models for Ben Silverman’s Electus. Stuecken & Campbell scripted the thriller Valencia for Bad Robot and Paramount’s Insurge, which just wrapped. They’re writing the English-language remake of Daniel Espinosa’s breakout film Snabba Cash for Warner Bros.
Gibson is repped by Jerome Martin (who’ll be a producer on the project) and Sloane, Offer, Weber & Dern; Le is with APA and manager Jonathan Hung; and Stuecken & Campbell are repped by UTA and manager Adam Kolbrenner.