Warner Brothers has set Michael and Peter Spierig to direct and John Brownlow to write a new sci-fi version of Captain Blood, the 1935 swashbuckler pirate classic that starred Errol Flynn as a wrongly imprisoned British doctor who escapes to become a pirate in the Caribbean, Variety reported.
Their big idea: Set the story in SPACE!
After WB and producer Bill Gerber dusted off the library title and had Brownlow do a faithful first draft, they sought out pitches from filmmakers. The Spierig siblings won the gig with a bold animatic presentation, Gerber said.
"At first, I felt like I was in that scene in The Player, where Buck Henry pitches the sequel to The Graduate," said Gerber. "But when I took a look at their animatic depiction of a pirate battle in space, it had such a distinctive visual look to it that I said, 'Great, I get it.'"
Gerber said that despite the radical period and venue switch, the film will be fairly faithful to a plot in which the doctor, Peter Blood, joins up with a French pirate (played in the original by Basil Rathbone), only to clash with the buccaneer when the woman he loves (Olivia de Havilland) is captured by the pirate skipper.
The Spierig brothers wrote and directed the upcoming vampire movie Daybreakers, which premieres this week at the Toronto Film Festival and opens wide on Jan. 8, 2010.