The clock has started on 24, the feature version of the Imagine Entertainment/Fox series. The project brings back Kiefer Sutherland’s tireless government operative Jack Bauer. Mark Bomback — a favorite writer at 20th Century Fox writing The Wolverine and Shadow Divers – is doing some last minute tweaking of Billy Ray’s script, and will turn it in by year’s end. Imagine and the studio have about five directors in mind — no, Tony Scott is not attached anymore — and it will all begin happening very quickly in the early part of next year. The goal is to get the film into production to match Sutherland’s availability, which begins in April. That should give producer Brian Grazer something to do after he completes producing the Academy Awards, and it is certainly good news for fans of the show who were beginning to fear the project wouldn’t happen.
Bryan Singer is getting his green light on Jack the Giant Killer, and he’s now figuring out who’ll climb the vine and slay the oversized villain. I’m told it has become the role that young actors are circling. I’ve also heard that Singer’s sweet on Aaron Johnson, who played the title role in Kick-Ass, and portrayed the young John Lennon in Nowhere Boy. Now, Johnson is hardly a lock; New Line is seeing a lot of other young actors as well. Production will begin this spring. The remake was developed by New Line as a dark re-telling of the Jack and the Beanstalk fable, with a script by Darren Lemke and Mark Bomback. Singer sparked to it when he was simultaneously developing X-Men: First Class to direct. When the Jack script needed work, though, Singer was momentarily tempted to do the X-Men project first. But Warner Bros, which once pulled Singer away from X-Men 3 to do Superman Returns when Fox took too long to close, wasn’t leaving the possibility for payback. Warner Bros locked Singer into a holding deal.
EXCLUSIVE: Former 24 exec producer and showrunner Howard Gordon is going for a trifecta this development season with a third major sale in the past week, this time to NBC. The network has given a put pilot commitment to drama Legends, which will be written by feature scribe Mark Bomback. Gordon is executive producing along with Bomback and Jonathan Levin. Legends, produced