〉Fox is nearing a bid for what could be the next hit franchise
TB is hearing that 20th Century Fox is close to closing a preemptive film rights deal on breakout indie book FALL OF GODS, which has Steve Tzirlin and Brooklyn Weaver attached as producers. CAA books is negotiating the rights package on the insanely hot property, which has all the makings as the next massive studio franchise. Gods is understood to have a unique Braveheart-esque angle on classic Norse gods and mythology, making for a rich and untapped universe to explore.
If the project moves forward, it will mark the second Fox preemptive/collaboration for Tzirlin & Weaver, who are also producing Timeless with Ridley Scott’s Scott Free, which has Rio director Carlos Saldanha on board to direct and produce.
Tzirlin has experience with combining exceptional writing with inspired visuals, having developed the hit series Star Wars: The Clone Wars. And Weaver has the handle on action, just off of producing the Liam Nesson-starrer Run All Night. Weaver’s had success with landing massive deals in the past, most recently setting up Brad Ingelsby’s buzzy spec The Burning Woman at Scott Free, with Anne Hathaway attached in the starring role.
The “illustrated novel,” which is in a unique new marriage of novel and graphic novel, has been promoted on the internet by Rasmus Berggreen, who is in charge of the project at MOOD Visuals, and is joined by writer Michael Vogt (Hitman) and artist Jan Ditlev Christensen on this sweeping epic/gallery exhibition.
MOOD describes the story best:
“The gods have long ago vanished. In their place, two rivaling races now inhabit Midgard; humans and jotnar. Fifteen years ago, a coalition of chieftains drove the jotnar race from Midgard. Now, from each side of the border, humans and jotnar eye each other with hatred and suspicion. When his wife, the estranged daughter of one of Midgard’s most powerful chieftains, is mysteriously kidnapped, a retired warrior takes up the hatchet and sets out to rescue her. But he risks unleashing the wild demon buried deep within him and losing his soul in the process. His journey will bring him into conflict with terrible forces as a cynical plot is revealed and the dark mythological past of the North begins to awaken once more.”
Just by seeing the striking and visceral images from the book, one can immediately understand why this compelling project has huge potential. The Norse world that Berggreen & Co. have created is screaming to be made into the next big fantasy franchise for Fox. This is a heavy-hitter, sure to rival Warcraft, Game Of Thrones, and the forthcoming Dungeons and Dragons adaptation with ease.
Berggreen has said that this work, while beautiful, is also extremely important because, “[I] have mostly seen American versions of Norse Mythology, and as a Scandinavian I really think it’s time to get [our] point of view across.”
That makes this project a huge and exciting cultural counterpoint for films like Thor, that some may see as Americans borrowing from a culture without completely understanding it.
The title, which was funded in part by massive support from over 1670 backers in a Kickstarter campaign, is available for pre-order, but has no announced publication date as of yet. However the deal shakes out, the project stands on its own as testament to what it means to build a vast world with art and literature.
Lance Boyle/Clark Allen | Staff Writers