Film memorabilia collector Ralph DeLuca paid $1.2 million for the rare Metropolis poster and eight others in a bankruptcy auction today in Los Angeles. Bidding for the lot, which also included posters from the 1933 films King Kong and Invisible Man, started at $700,000. The Metropolis poster from the 1927 Fritz Lang classic was purchased by California collector Kenneth Schachter for a record $690,000 in a 2005 private sale, but he was forced to sell it and eight others after declaring bankruptcy. “I honestly feel that the ‘Metropolis’ poster is worth more than the whole lot,” DeLuca told Reuters after the auction. It is one of only four copies known to be in existence. Metropolis was the most expensive silent film ever made at the time of its release and considered a hallmark in early cinema for its use of special effects and futuristic plot.
Veronica Mars creator Rob Thomas is back at the CW with Metropolis, a drama based on the 2000 British series. Thomas will write and executive produce the project, about a group of friends who are struggling with their adult lives not living up to the expectations they had when they were idealistic college friends.
The original limited series, created by Peter Morgan (The Queen, Frost/Nixon) and produced by Granada TV, had an eight-episode run with a cast that included James Fox, Louise Lombard, James Purefoy and Matthew Rhys. The adaptation is being produced by Warner Bros TV, Rob Thomas Prods, ITV Studios America (formerly Granada America) and Littlefield Co, with Warren Littlefield and ITV’s Paul Buccieri executive producing.
This is Thomas’ second stab at adapting Metropolis. The previous one was at ABC during the 1999-2000 development season when the project went to pilot starring Michael Ealy, with the CW’s programming chief Thom Sherman serving as a network development executive. Thomas is now contemporizing the script.