When the phrase “pulp magazines” is mentioned, the name of Doc Savage is never far behind. You can’t get much more “pulp” than the Man of Bronze. It appears that Colombia Pictures believe there is an opening in the comic book movie market for another hero to shine as they have snapped up Shane Black’s screenplay with the scribe also attached to direct.
Black is currently ironing out the screenplay with Anthony Bagarozzi and Chuck Mondry, with Neal Moritz due to produce the film through his Sony-based Original Film banner.
Doc Savage has had an incarnation everywhere, from radio and TV to even a less than successful 1975 movie starring Ron Ely. Yet during the 1930s and ’40s, he was one of the most popular characters in the pulps. Doc Savage, for those who do not know, was born Clark Savage Jr. After birth, his father gathered a specialist team of scientists to train Doc’s body and mind to near superhuman capabilities. A human who has been trained to the peak of human capabilities – sound familiar? Well DC Comics recognised that they could be “two for a pair” when they released a one-shot team up of Doc Savage and Batman last year. Maybe the relative success of that is what spurred Colombia on to get a film rolling.
“Doc Savage is an icon, a character with limitless possibilities,” Columbia co-president Matt Tolmach told Variety. “We have had a great experience working with Neal to bring another classic character of the era, the Green Hornet, to a new generation of fans, and we think he and Shane make the ideal team to bring Doc Savage back to the big screen.”
It goes without saying that to make Savage a success in today’s superhero movie world, a lot of the kitschy aspects of the character may have to go. But what do you want to see kept in the film? Should Monk, Ham and Renny make an appearance? Should Doc’s Russian-born nemesis John Sunlight be the main villain? Should it be set in the present day or back in the 1930s or ’40s? As always IJMers, sound off in the comments box.
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