Does that tall, bald, intimidating waiter with the barcode tattoo on the back of his head look a little out of place? It might be because the Hitman video game franchise is getting a movie reboot, as Fox International prepares to cash in on the property for the first time since 2007’s Hitman.
The new movie, titled Agent 47, was originally supposed to begin filming this month, but production was delayed due to the death of Paul Walker, who was set to play the lead. The project now seems to be getting back on track and will hopefully begin filming within the next few months.
The latest development is a pretty major casting announcement: Deadline reports that Zachary Quinto, whose most recent big-screen appearance was the role of Spock in last year’s sci-fi blockbuster Star Trek Into Darkness, is now set to star in Agent 47. Quinto is currently playing Tom in a production of The Glass Menagerie at New York’s Booth Theater, but will move on to Agent 47 when the show finishes its run on February 23.
Quinto won’t actually be playing the eponymous Agent 47 – that part has been taken by Homeland star Rupert Friend – and Deadline doesn’t give any details as to who his character might be. The Hitman video game franchise doesn’t have too many major recurring characters (though it’s had plenty of enemies and assassination targets), and it’s possible that Quinto will be playing an original character. He’d certainly be great as a villain, since he first gained widespread attention for his role as Sylar in Heroes.
Looking more broadly at the creative team behind Agent 47, we’re keeping our trademark cautious optimism very cautious for now. The script was penned by Predators co-writer Michael Finch and also by Skip Woods, who wrote the 2007 Hitman film as well as other action-thrillers like A Good Day to Die Hard and X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Director Aleksander Bach comes from a commercial background, and Agent 47 will be his first feature.
Undeterred by the current poor reputation that video game movies hold, Hollywood is still pushing adaptations hard in the hope of finding a breakout success. Ubisoft has set up its own studio called Ubisoft Motion Pictures, hoping to create better movies by maintaining a great deal of creative control over its properties, and this spring will see the release of a Need for Speed movie with Aaron Paul playing the lead. Marvel producer Avi Arad has predicted that video game movies will soon see a renaissance in the same way that comic book movies have, but we’ll believe that when it happens.
Agent’s 47‘s release date has yet to be announced, but we’ll keep you updated on the project as it develops.