CBMB: The Rock and Borat are Leading a Pulp Heroes Film Revolution | FanboysInc

CBMB: The Rock and Borat are Leading a Pulp Heroes Film Revolution

By Muuka Muyumba

Back on May 31, 2016, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson posted to his Instagram that he and his producing partner are working with Iron Man 3 director Shane Black to bring the long-gestating Doc Savage action picture to the big screen. Neal H. Moritz, Ori Marmur and Michael Uslan also are producing with F.J. DeSanto is co-producing for DC Entertainment, Original Film, and Seven Bucks Productions.

He might not be the "hilarious weirdo" that Dwayne Johnson advertised, but that doesn't mean the classic pulp hero is exactly normal, either.

The character debuted in 1933 in pulp comics magazines, and is credited as an inspiration for the 1936 debut of Superman. He was created by publisher Harry Ralston and editor John L. Nanovic. As Johnson described, “Doc was physically and mentally trained from birth by his father and a team of scientists to become the perfect human specimen with a genius level intellect,” he wrote. “His heightened senses are beyond comprehension. He can even identify a women’s perfume from half a mile away. He is literally the master of everything.”

He was Superman without the cape or the flying or charming personality. However, knowing how charming The Rock can be, it would be interesting to see whether we see a slightly sweeter version of the hero. No release date has been set for the project.

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Today, news broke that Oscar-nominee Sacha Baron Cohen has signed on the pulp comic hero Mandrake the Magician for Warner Bros. Get Hard director Etan Cohen is attached to the project as is a script from David and Janet Peoples along with Tom Wheeler. The Dark Knight trilogy producer Charles Roven and Andy Horowitz are working on the film for Atlas Entertainment.

Created by <strong>Lee Falk</strong> in 1934, the 'Mandrake' comic strip centered on an illusionist who had the power to hypnotize his foes at great speed.

Mandrake was created by Lee Falk in 1934 (so Doc Savage has him beat) living for many years in the newspaper pages during the Great Depression era. Later Columbia Pictures made a 12-part serial in 1939, and TV movie aired in the 1970s.

This film will center on the adventures of Mandrake, the illusionist and escapist with the power to hypnotize his enemies. He would travel the world with his companion Lothar, solving mysteries and fighting his enemies, including his similarly-powered twin brother.

Warners has been working on this film for some time, and back in 2012, when Supergirl producer Sarah Schechter was overseeing the project. Disney had the right for a while, but then it moved to Baldwin Entertainment and Hyde Park where directors Chuck Russell and Mimi Leder were attached with a cast featuring Jonathan Rhys Meyers and Hayden Christensen.

No release or production date has been set for either project, but these separate items taken together seem to signal that Warner Bros may be working on a pulp comic universe while their DC Films Universe is in its infancy. We’ll know more if we see an announcement of other pulp comic heroes like The Phantom, Dick Tracy or The Shadow who have all had film adaptations before.