I can honestly say I was not expecting that.
“Sgt. Rock” has been in development since the actual end of World War II. I’m almost sure that’s a fact. In all that time, the film has always been a WWII action movie, although the style and the mission and the combination of characters has varied wildly over the years as filmmakers have come and gone. When I was on the set of “Sherlock Holmes,” Guy Ritchie talked to me about his plans for the project. He wanted to make a straight-up “Dirty Dozen,” and I could tell he was curious to see if “Inglourious Basterds” was going to be a threat to their plans. Since then, Ritchie’s moved on to “Lobo,” and it looks like “Sgt. Rock” has entered a brand-new chapter in its development history.
A very, very strange chapter.
Sgt. Rock and Easy Company have been part of comics since 1959, and they’ve had their own book on and off since the late ’70s. And in all that time, in every incarnation, with every various creative team who have worked on the character over the years… it has always been about WWII.
So now Francis Lawrence, director of “Constantine” and “I Am Legend,” is interested in doing “Sgt. Rock” as a war movie set in the future.
Even typing that phrase seems preposterous to me. Chad St. John, who also wrote a remake of “Outland” for Warner Bros., is the guy charged with scripting this radical reinvention of Sgt. Rock. Joel Silver and Akiva Goldsman are producing the film, along with Andrew Rona according to the article that Boris Kit wrote for The Hollywood Reporter.
The line in Kit’s piece that just plain confuses me is “Gregory Noveck is overseeing for DC Comics.” Why? If they’re doing Sgt. Rock in the future, what input could Noveck possibly have? This isn’t going to be dealing with Earth-Two or any of the other excuses that DC has come up with for post-WWII Rock appearances in the past. This is barely an adaptation. I don’t really see why they’d use the Sgt. Rock title on this when it won’t have anything to do with the property in any of its previous incarnations.
Then again, I’ve given up trying to understand the decisions people make in adaptation. Maybe we’ll see the final film and it’ll be amazing, and we’ll wonder why they didn’t always set “Sgt. Rock” in the future.
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