EXCLUSIVE: Playwright-screenwriter Philip Gawthorne has been hired by Universal Pictures to adapt the graphic novel Chrononauts, a comic book series created by Mark Millar and Sean Gordon Murphy. The producer is Chris Morgan — who has written six films in the billion-dollar Fast & Furious franchise including The Fate Of The Furious, which just chalked up the biggest worldwide opening weekend in history with $532 million.
Chrononauts is a time-traveling adventure that follows two fun-loving, scientific geniuses (Corbin Quinn and Danny Reilly) as they embark on the world’s first time-travel experiment. The project is being done through the Chris Morgan Productions banner. Millar and Murphy are executive producers.
Gawthorne previously wrote the screenplay for Kojak for producers Scott Stuber and Vin Diesel for the Fast & Furious franchiser to star. He also scripted Lionsgate’s remake of Cube and is co-writing STX’s Black Hole as well as Warner Bros’ World Breaker.
The screenwriter’s Modern Life Is Rubbish feature film, based on his acclaimed stage play, will be released this year.
Millar created some of Marvel’s biggest-selling titles, including Civil War, which was the basis for Captain America: Civil War movie. He then left to form Millarworld where his creator-owned titles have been adapted into hit films for Universal and others. One of those was Wanted marked his first collaboration with Morgan; others successful titles include Kick-Ass and Kingsman: The Secret Service.
Sean Gordon Murphy is the creator of DC Comics’ Punk Rock Jesus; he also is a Eisner-award winning artist for DC’s The Wake. He’s worked on such characters as Batman and Constantine as well as numerous other DC and independent projects. In 2014, he collaborated with Christopher Nolan on a short Interstellar comic for Wired Magazine.
Ainsley Davies, the head of development at Chris Morgan Productions, will oversee the project for the company. Jay Polidoro, Universal’s VP Production, is overseeing for the studio.
Gawthorne is repped by CAA, Josh Varney of 42 in the UK, and attorney Greg Slewett of Bloom Hergott.