After Iron Man, and the Hulk (again), that is?
Graeme McMillan, of the SF blog io9, has heard rumors about Thor (please no! can only be cheesy), the Avengers (too many of 'em! Plus: Thor), and Ant-Man (actually makes a lot of sense, now that small is beautiful again, but... small guy, giant ants = cheesy). Dissatisfied with these options, McMillan made a few other suggestions on Monday.
Like Doctor Strange, for example!
Created by Spider-Man's combination of [writer] Stan Lee and [artist] Steve Ditko, Marvel's "Master of The Mystic Arts" has all the potential to crossover to mainstream success. The story of an arrogant famous surgeon who survives a terrible accident but without the finger dexterity to keep slicing and sewing, only to become the world's most powerful magician after a Tibetan retreat, it's Nip/Tuck meets Iron Man meets Harry Potter. Get someone like Guillermo Del Toro to direct and George Clooney to star, and your summer blockbuster is all taken care of.
Sounds great. Except for
Clooney, of course. The worst work he ever did was as a superhero. You need someone tall, thin, elegant, troubled but articulate. Like Leo:
NB: My friend Greg Rowland (HC) pointed out recently that in Roger Corman's Poe-inspired horror-comedy, "The Raven," the tall, elegant, refined Vincent Price plays a magician who uses mystic power bolts in what Rowland calls "a fairly Ditkoesque manner." Since "The Raven" came out on Jan. 25, 1963, and the first appearance of Doctor Strange (in "Strange Tales" #110) was in July of that same year, it seems likely that Ditko might have designed Strange's look after seeing the Corman/Price movie. (Shades of the Iron Man origin mystery!)
McMillan also suggests, less seriously, that someone make a movie based on the little-known 1970s comic book "U.S. 1." Published in the early 1980s, in "U.S. 1" a truck driver whose metal skull plate allows him to not only telepathically control his truck but to pick up CB transmissions "ends up traveling the highways in the sky after aliens introduce him to the concept of space trucking," according to McMillan.
I don't think that would fly (as it were), but here's an idea I've been sitting on for years. One that only became possible in recent years, thanks to the invention of CGI animation. A movie version of... wait for it... "The Haunted Tank," a comic book feature that appeared in the DC anthology G.I. Combat from 1961-87. "The Haunted Tank" never had its own comic book; I only know about it because my younger brother was a big fan of "Sgt. Rock," another long-running series from G.I. Combat.
"Haunted Tank" follows the adventures of Jeb Stuart, commander of one of America's Stuart tanks fighting with the Allies in the North African and European campaigns of WWII. Although he's young and inexperienced, Stuart is an incredible tactician... thanks to the ghost of Confederate general J.E.B. Stuart, who flies along next to the tank on his ghostly horse. Oh yeah, and Stuart flies a Confederate flag on the tank. Think Johnny Knoxville, plus Sam Elliott as the ghost. It'll direct itself. Can't fail.
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