As previously reported, Fox is looking to launch a new science fiction franchise with classic comic strip character Flash Gordon. John Davis is producing this relaunch with J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay (‘Star Trek 3’) and George Nolfi handling the script. Davis has been working on this deal for over a year, finally gaining the rights from the Hearst Corporation. Davis previously produced ‘Chronicle‘ and the upcoming reboot ‘The Man From U.N.C.L.E.’ Nolfi will also serve as a producer.
Flash Gordon predates most other “super heroes” having debuted in 1934. Originally, he was a polo player who winds up as a space-faring action hero on the wild planet Mongo, where he finds himself opposed to despotic ruler Ming the Merciless. Flash is joined on his escapades by the brilliant, but slightly off-kilter Doctor Hans Zarkoff and perennial damsel in distress Dale Arden.
‘Flash’ was such a success, he spawned three movie serials in the 30s-40s starring Buster Crabbe and further adaptations, both live action and animated. Of course there is the campy 1980 movie starring Sam J. Jones, Max Von Sydow and Timothy Dalton (and a classic soundtrack by Queen) and most recently a Syfy series in 2007 starring Eric Johnson.
The rights to the concept have bumped around Hollywood for years having passed through Sony, Mandalay and Universal. Will Fox be able to launch this rocket, when other studios have failed? Can a new ‘Flash Gordon’ step out from the shadow of the 1980 Dino De Laurentis-produced film?
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