Variety has confirmed Latino Review‘s scoop that Warner Bros. and producer Joel Silver have set Kung Fu Panda co-director John Stevenson to make his live action directing debut on Masters of the Universe, a re-imagining of the signature Mattel toy line.
He-Man is a brawny prince who transforms into a warrior who becomes the last hope for a magical land called Eternia, which is being ravaged by technology and the evil Skeletor.
Silver is producing through his Silver Pictures and Mattel’s Barry Waldo will be executive producer.
WB acquired the property in 2007, and Justin Marks wrote the first draft of the script based on a story he wrote with Neil Ellice.
The Mattel property became iconic by way of the 1980s cartoon series “He-Man and the Masters of the Universe,” and the property was previously turned into a 1987 film starring Dolph Lungdren as He-Man and Frost/Nixon star Frank Langella as the villainous Skeletor.
Stevenson said he made up his mind when he went to Mattel headquarters and was shown into a secret lair that contained the visuals created by the toymaker staff.
“There was this locked bunker that you had to be escorted into,” Stevenson said. “It was filled with art, some generated by the Mattel artists, and I looked around, and said, ‘I get it.’ We started formulating a specific vision for costumes, creatures, architecture, and the creation of a mythology and look for a whole world we’ll create.”