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Fresh off the news that he has secured his future in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as the next big-screen Captain America, Anthony Mackie has another big action gig in the works. Deadline reports that Mackie has signed on to star in and executive produce a live-action TV series based on the popular video game franchise Twisted Metal, adding another big genre project to an already loaded plate.
The project is a team-up of Sony Pictures Television and Playstation Productions, and will star Mackie as John Doe, a "motor-mouthed outsider" asked to deliver a package by crossing a wasteland full of enemies driving post-apocalyptic vehicles, including the video game franchise's legendary ice cream-truck driving clown, Sweet Tooth.
“We’ve been big fans of Anthony’s phenomenal body of work over the years and knew he was the only actor who could play a character as complex, funny and compelling as John Doe. Fortunately for us, he agreed,” Glenn Adilman, EVP Comedy Development at Sony TV, said.
This blend of the demolition derby theatrics of the original Twisted Metal games and the post-apocalyptic racing of Mad Max: Fury Road comes courtesy of Deadpool and Zombieland writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, who came up with the concept that got Sony execs excited about the property. Reese and Wernick will serve as executive producers on the project, but will hand off writing duties to Michael Jonathan Smith, best known for his work on the YouTube/Netflix hit Cobra Kai.
The first Twisted Metal arrived for the Sony Playstation all the way back in 1995 and immediately became a hit game, spawning half a dozen sequels and assorted spinoffs. A screen adaptation has been in the works on some level for years, but gained momentum earlier this year when it was revealed that Reese and Wernick had signed on with a new concept. Now, with Mackie onboard, they've got star power to boot.
Twisted Metal does not yet have a distributor, but with Mackie signed on, we can probably expect that to change very soon. If you need a refresher on the concept and tone, check out an official trailer for one of the older games below.