As one of the biggest stars on the planet, Brad Pitt long ago gave up doing projects merely for the money, choosing to point his career in whatever direction he wants. Now he and his production company, Plan B, are aiming it back at sci-fi for the thriller Alpha, written by Robopocalypse author Daniel H. Wilson. A match made in future-heaven.
Lionsgate acquired the rights to Alpha, which Pitt produce, though he hasn’t made any move to jump into a starring role just yet. Which is okay, since we really aren’t sure what Alpha is going to be about at the moment. According to THR, the film is a “sci-fi survival story that has shades of Jack London,” who wrote The Call of the Wild and White Fang. I’d be okay with a version of The Grey where the wolf is some kind of an alien monster instead. Any story that presents a science fiction angle where it normally isn’t seen, I’m behind.
Alpha already has a director lined up in Anthony Scott Burns, who made his case for the job with a fake commercial he directed for the fictional company at the center of the story. While he hasn’t made a feature just yet, he helmed an episode of the extremely awesome horror series Darknet (which you can find on Netflix), as well as the short film Manifold, which shows extreme promise for the young director. Check it out below:
Wilson, who will write the screenplay for Alpha based on his own original idea, has had some experience with Hollywood knocking on his door. His nonfiction book How to Survive a Robot Uprising was optioned by Paramount just after its publication in 2005, with a script written by Reno 911‘s Thomas Lennon and Ben Garant. (It was later to become a Steve Pink film with Jack Black, but it hasn’t been heard from in a while.) His book Bro-Jitsu was picked up by Nickelodeon Movies, but never became anything. The 2009 novel Amped was set to become an Alex Proyas flick, but that never happened either.
The biggest of all of these, though, involves Robopocalypse, which was going to become a Steven Spielberg movie when it was bought up by DreamWorks SKG. And while Spielberg has still shown interest in this project, which was delayed due to budgetary reasons, he’s currently got a slew of films on his upcoming slate, so we might just be seeing Alpha before any of Wilson’s other works.