Instances of the rights to comic books being acquired and developed into movies before all of the whole comic series has been released, have become increasingly common. The latest is Freedom Formula, a five issue comic series created by Edmund Shern.
And the guy eyeing the property? None other than The Usual Suspects, X-Men (the first two) and Superman Returns director Bryan Singer. He, along with his production company Bad Hat Harry, has teamed up with Radical Pictures to develop the comic into a big-screen movie that will be distributed by 20th Century Fox.
Now, for any avid Singer fans out there, of which I am one (what he did with the first two X-Men films was damn near a movie miracle and he created a masterpiece with The Usual Suspects), you might want to reel in your excitement just a little bit: he won't be directing Freedom Formula.
Currently he's attached as a producer (through his production company Bad Hat Harry), which marks his second producing attachment this week - he also teamed up with Warner Bros. to option the comic Capeshooters.
Since Freedom Formula is a pretty fresh comic series (not even available in its entirety yet), you most likely don't know what it's about (if you do you, sorry for the re-hash!). Here's the general outline:
It's described as a futuristic "Top Gun" in which racing exo-suits have replaced fighter jets. The story focuses on a genetically engineered racer who learns that his bloodline has the power to change society.
Radical Pictures not only does film producing, but is also a comic book publishing company under the name Radical Publishing (why makes things complicated?). In addition to the film, Radical is already in talks to expand the comic book into anime and video game formats.
While not saying too much, Singer has given us at least some thoughts on why he has pursued Freedom Formula:
"This is a timeless story about young people struggling to break free of authority. That's what ultimately appealed to me," Singer said.
And Radical's Barry Levine added: "There are great set pieces, but this is character-driven."
It'll be interesting to see if Singer puts his stamp firmly on this project, or whether he will leave the director (who, to the best of public knowledge, hasn't been chosen yet) to do his/her own thing with it. I suspect since he's a full blown producer, and not just assigning his name as an executive producer (just to get the film noticed), that he will want to be pretty much hands-on, acting as the next best thing to actually helming it himself.
It's hard, as always, to judge a piece of material on whether or not it warrants a feature film--especially if it isn't even released fully yet to see for ourselves. The premise is pretty out there, and it sounds like it could make for some interesting viewing (possibly with some wicked special effects if they get an adequate budget).
We will have to wait until we get more on the development of this project, including some concept art or even still images (which is thinking way ahead, I know). But until then, enjoy some awesome clips from the comics:
To check out more art from the comic head over to Radical Comic's website. But remember to come back and tell us what you think!
Source: ComingSoon.net and Variety