It was announced back in May that Iron Man 3 director Shane Black would be bringing pulp hero Doc Savage to the big screen in a feature film adaptation. Little has been said about the project since then, but Black has now elaborated more on the film in an interview with IGN.
“Obviously in the books there’s an element of ‘goody goody’ that we like. Doc Savage was the basis essentially for Superman because his name is Clark, he has a fortress of solitude, and ‘oh Superman has the same thing, that’s odd.’ But that kind of perfect hero who never makes mistakes him great to a point and that type of adventure and the pulp it represents has been so immitated. Raiders of the Lost Ark is essentially a child of Doc Savage. But we needed something more.
“So we kept it in the 30s, we beefed up the sort of rationale behind what it would take to be a perfect person and to be trained as such from childhood and how that would scar someone. And what it would take to be a parent who is capable of inflicting that on your kid. But beyond that we’ve also tried to be true to the series, give him the helpers and it’s also reinvigorating it but introducing a whole new brand of people to this is a challenge. It’s been around, it’s been 75 years.”
The subject then changed to casting, and Black explains why there hasn’t been much talk about casting since the announcement.
“Here’s the problem: They kind of gotta be tall. He’s the perfect physical specimen and when people look at him, they’re overawed by the sort of symmetry and perfection that he exudes. I don’t know that you could use like James McAvoy as Doc Savage. You couldn’t do it. He’s a fine actor, but we need someone big. Back in the day Schwarzenegger was talked about to play Doc Savage. I don’t know who we’d get.”
The idea of Thor’s Chris Hemsworth as Doc Savage was brought up, to which Black replied, “That’s not a bad idea. What’s he doing?”
Black will direct the Doc Savage film for Sony Pictures from a script he has co-written with Anthony Bagarozzi and Charles Mondry. Neal H. Moritz is producing the project with Ori Marmur through his Original Film banner. Michael Uslan will also serve as a producer on the film. No release date is currently set.