Development roundup: District 9’s Sharlto Copley to direct new sci-fi comedy, Highlander reboot ramps up

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Mar 2, 2018

As an actor, Sharlto Copley has wowed audiences with some very memorable performances, particularly in Neill Blomkamp's District 9 (2009) Elysium (2013), and Chappie (2015.) Now, the South African star is set to show us what he’s made of behind the camera, too.

Deadline reports that Copley will make his directorial debut with Sapien Safari, a science-fiction comedy that he’ll also star in. Per the report, the project tells an intriguing story of an alien naturalist called Riblik (dubbed the Steve Irwin of the galaxy) who has to convince Earth’s new owner that its dominant wildlife species needs to be protected.

We’re certainly excited to see what Copley has up his sleeve with this one. And with QC Entertainment backing the project (who helped produce the genre smash Get Out), it looks as though he’ll be in safe hands.


In other development news, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and New Regency are teaming up to produce Black Hole, an adaptation of the graphic novel by Charles Burns. Rick Famuyiwa, who had been rumored to be directing The Flash movie, has signed on to write and direct the project, according to The Hollywood Reporter. 

The '70s-set story sees a group of teens come across a strange, sexually-transmitted disease known as “the Bug.” The nasty strain causes mutations, turning victims into something else entirely and causing havoc around town. Based on the cult comics that saw 12 issues over 10 years, the plot details the affected teens taking refuge in the local woodland area as they become outcasts of society. Sounds potentially epic, and very, very messy. 


Finally, if you're a fan of Highlander and have been hankering for some kind of new entry in the saga, you may finally get your fix. Per Deadline, a long-in-development reboot of the 1986 cult hit now has a script. It's from scribe Ryan Condal, whose credits include Colony and the upcoming Rampage film, and John Wick's Chad Stahelski is set to direct. The outlet is touting the film as putting a fresh spin on the saga, which — in the Christopher Lambert / Sean Connery-headlined original — told the epic tale of immortal warriors as they battled through several eras.

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