Margot Robbie is finalizing plans to play famous Robin Hood heroine Maid Marian on the big screen – but not as part of Lionsgate’s upcoming reboot, Robin Hood: Origins. The latter is an origin story for the eponymous folk hero that is currently in production for a Spring 2018 theatrical release date, with Taron Egerton (Kingsman: The Secret Service) and Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx starring as a young Robin Hood and Little John, respectively.
Marian, however, is a solo movie that Robbie is set to headline as the namesake. The premise for the film is that Marian, following the death of her beloved Robin of Locksley, decides to continue fighting the good fight that Robin started those years before. The film is thus designed to serve as something of an origin story for the Maid Marian character, similar to how Robin Hood: Origins and Guy Ritchie’s upcoming King Arthur: Legend of the Sword explore their own namesake’s journeys towards becoming legendary warriors, in their own right.
THR is confirming the news about Robbie committing to star in Marian, with Donald De Line and Amy Pascal producing from a script by the relative unknown, Pete Barry. Robbie has been building on her success from starring in such movies as The Wolf of Wall Street and Suicide Squad in recent years, resulting in her being a producer on most of the starring vehicles that she has in development (including the Suicide Squad spinoff, Gotham City Sirens). She is positioned to continue that practice with Marian, as THR reports that Robbie’s LuckyChap Entertainment may wind up producing the film.
Marian is being developed by Sony – the same studio that, as those with good memories may recall, was considering developing a shared Robin Hood movie universe, a couple of years back. The idea behind the Robin Hood cinematic universe was that Sony would give the individual members of Robin Hood’s Merry Men – Little John, Friar Tuck and Will Scarlett – their own solo movies, following the release of a (successful) Robin Hood-centered film reboot. It doesn’t sound like Marian is a carryover from that proposed cinematic universe, per se, but a single film centered around a Robin Hood character anchored by an A-lister (in Robbie) whose star continues to rise, reads as being the smarter move for Sony to make, anyway.
Legend of the Sword was similarly intended to kickoff a King Arthur cinematic universe during the early stages of its development, before that idea was also abandoned – though sequels/spinoffs remain a natural possibility for that film, should it become a box office hit. By comparison, neither Robin Hood: Origins nor Marian have yet to be part of any shared universe discussion; meaning their success or failure will not be directly impacted by the performance of other films. Robbie, for her part, has already costarred in one semi-successful modern reboot of a longstanding Hollywood adventure property (see last year’s The Legend of Tarzan), so there may be hope yet for her Maid Marian adventure.
We’ll bring you more information on Marian as it becomes available.