Today’s recently-announced development projects -- from the likes of Melissa McCarthy, Leo Matsuda, and Kyle Bradstreet -- cover all sides of the wide spread of what constitutes “genre.” There’s supernatural trucker weirdness, animated aliens, and world-domination-inclined artificial intelligence -- and it’s not even the middle of the week yet.
First up, let's start with McCarthy, whose film Super-Intelligence is scheduled to begin production in July. The actress is bringing the action-comedy to the screen with her husband and filmmaking partner, Ben Falcone, who has directed McCarthy in Tammy, The Boss (whose scribe Steve Mallory is also writing this one), and the upcoming Life of the Party, and will continue that trend on Super-Intelligence.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, "McCarthy will play Carol Peters, a former corporate executive whose earnest yet unfulfilled life is turned upside down when she is selected for observation by the world’s first super-intelligence — an artificial intelligence that may or may not take over the world."
Next in line, the presence of a mysterious other with an ulterior motive is echoed in Sputnik, the movie recently sold by Leo Matsuda to DreamWorks. Matsuda storyboarded films like Zootopia, Big Hero 6, and Wreck-It Ralph, before breaking out with his short Inner Workings (see above), which introduced Moana.
Sputnik, Matsuda's feature debut, is based on Frank Cottrell-Boyce’s book Sputnik's Guide to Life on Earth. Cottrell-Boyce is writing the movie. In his story, Prez is adapting to a new home when he meets Sputnik. The latter isn’t altogether normal, because he can hear thoughts and play with space and time like they’re LEGOs. Together, the kids have to save the world. But this isn’t the only animation project Matsuda’s got rolling. It’s not even the only one he has rolling at DreamWorks.
Yokai Samba, a folk-tale inspired film with Brazilian and Japanese influences that’s details are secret as of now, was also nabbed by the company from Matsuda -- on the condition that he could write and direct. That’s a lot of creative control, but for an animation veteran, this is the kind of power play that could break him into the upper echelons of the industry.
Finally, someone else making moves is Mr. Robot executive producer Kyle Bradstreet. The writer, utilizing his overall deal at Universal Cable Productions, is shifting gears from the techno-madness of the aforementioned series to one of a more earthy horror with Alice Isn’t Dead.
Bradstreet will write and produce the series, which is based on the podcast and upcoming novel from Joseph Fink (who you may know from horror/comedy podcast Welcome to Nightvale). The project is one of mystery and loss, as Keisha looks for her missing wife Alice, who has recently been discovered to be alive. Possessing much of Nightvale’s uncanny supernaturality, this show will likely blend romance, absurdity, and abject horror like nothing else out there.