A story idea by the late Stan Lee is getting made in Asia, a Russian sci-fi film gets a North American distributor, a Satanic doc gets a buyer, and the director of We Need to Talk About Kevin is preparing to make an environmental horror film — all in this latest roundup of notable genre projects.
First up, Excelsior! Although Marvel’s greatest showman Stan Lee may no longer be with us, his spirit — and ideas — still live on. A report from Variety has revealed that a live-action TV show based on Lee’s story idea, The B-Team, is getting made in South Korea and China. The series centers on a team of B-rated superheroes fighting a mad scientist who created them.
Apparently the plan is to create two original versions of the series — one in South Korea and one in China, with each series using separate locales and different actors (while still sticking to the same story idea). South Korea’s Studio Invictus will serve as the main production house for The B-Team and will work with China’s Camsing International, which bought Stan Lee’s POW! Entertainment last year.
Korean TV writer Kang Eun-kyung, best known for writing the 2010 series Bread, Love and Dreams (aka King of Baking, Kim Takgu), will write scripts for both the Korean and Chinese versions.
The Korean series is tentatively expected to debut in 2020.
Meanwhile, Hail Satan! Magnolia Pictures announced that it has acquired the worldwide rights to Hail Satan?, a new documentary by Penny Lane that charts the rise of The Satanic Temple.
Hail Satan? traces the rise of The Satanic Temple and its leader, Lucien Greaves, as they call for a Satanic revolution to save the nation’s soul. But the documentary wants to know: Are they for real?
“Penny Lane has crafted an eye-opening and completely satisfying film about outsiders who have united around the common causes of love and religious freedom,” said Magnolia President Eamonn Bowles in a statement. “Hail Satan? is as uplifting and hilarious as it is thought-provoking.”
Hail Satan? will premiere at the Sundance Film Festival later this winter, then be released in theaters in spring 2019.
High Octane Pictures has acquired the North American distribution rights to Russian import A Rough Draft, a sci-fi cyberpunk feature written by Sergei Lukianenko (Night Watch) and directed by Sergey Mokritskiy (Protest Day). Nikita Volkov, Yulia Peresild and Yevgeny Tsyganov star.
Per Deadline, A Rough Draft takes place in the world of online gaming and centers on a man whose memory and identity have been erased, and who must play middleman to corresponding worlds.
“Much like the ground-breaking The Matrix, Mokritskiy’s film compels with its depiction of reality and its own heightened version of reality,” said Galen Christy, founder of High Octane Pictures, per Deadline. “Complete with state-of-the-art visual effects, A Rough Draft encompasses a captivating and very original storyline that really pushes the envelope in terms of what can be achieved in filmmaking.”
A Rough Draft hits theatres next year.
And finally, director Lynne Ramsay plans for her next film to be an “epic environmental horror.” The director of We Need to Talk About Kevin and You Were Never Really Here told the British Independent Film Awards website that after promoting You Were Never Really Here, “she wrote 160 pages” of “this epic environmental horror thing,” adding: “I don’t know what it is yet, I just kept writing and didn’t look back.”
Ramsay didn’t provide any specifics about when production will begin, probably because it’s nowhere near the preproduction phase. However, she did say that she’s “hoping to be up and running and shooting something sooner rather than later.”