Director Guy Ritchie is looking to kick off another franchise at Warner Bros., and this is one that the studio has been trying to get off the ground for years. If you’ll remember, Warner Bros. developed a take on the King Arthur legend called Arthur & Lancelot a couple of years ago with David Dobkin (The Change-Up) attached to direct. The project went so far as to cast Kit Harington (Game of Thrones) and Joel Kinnaman (RoboCop) in the lead roles, but WB pulled the plug when the budget got two high. It looked as if things might pick up when Colin Farrell then entered talks to take on a lead role, but that casting didn’t work out and Dobkin went on to direct Robert Downey Jr. in the upcoming drama The Judge.
Now Sherlock Holmes director Guy Ritchie is looking to revive a King Arthur film at the studio, this time as part of an ambitious six-film franchise. Hit the jump to read on.
The folks over at Deadline report that Ritchie is looking to make a new version of King Arthur at Warner Bros., envisioned as a tentpole fantasy retelling meant to span six films. Joby Harold (Awake) penned the script for the first film and Akiva Goldsman and Ritchie’s producing partner Lionel Wigram are onboard to produce. Ritchie previously developed a version of a King Arthur film with Wigram back in 2010, but the John Hodge-penned project lost steam when Dobkin’s film forged ahead.
This iteration appears to be different than the previous King Arthur film that Ritchie was developing, but it’s certainly ambitious in scale. Ritchie has been in Warner Bros.’ favor after successfully helming the first two Sherlock Holmes films, and he recently helmed the spy pic The Man from U.N.C.L.E. starring Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer for the studio. Moreover, Warner Bros. has been looking for “the next Harry Potter” since that franchise concluded, and this would certainly fill that fantasy void. It’s very possible that this new King Arthur film could crumble just as all the other versions have, but if U.N.C.L.E. turns out well, that might go a long way to making King Arthur more of a reality. With U.N.C.L.E. slated for release sometime this year, we should hear more one way or another soon.