Those who follow this sort of thing will almost certainly get what I mean when I say the voyage to get Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips‘ beloved comics series Incognito to the big screen has been a long one. Earlier this decade, an adaptation of the series, which tracks the life of Zack Overkill, a very powerful figure, was well underway at 20th Century Fox with All the Way scribe Robert Schenkken set up to write the script. That didn’t work out, apparently, and the property was the object of interest in a game of hot potato between studios for awhile before the Icon series got picked up by Sony.
The adaptation was in a kind of limbo again until last year, when it was first revealed that Fede Alvarez, the talented young filmmaker behind the excellent Evil Dead remake and the gripping Don’t Breathe, was setting this up as his next project after Don’t Breathe. That’s something to get seriously excited about. Alvarez, much like the great Jaume Collet-Serra, is a remarkably thoughtful director working in one of the few genres that still genuinely treasures inventiveness in direction, namely Horror and the Thriller game. Given the right property, the right studio, and a decent script, Alvarez could turn Incognito into a genuine sensation in the vein of Deadpool, a clearly personal work in the superhero genre, which often is not suited to anything less than the total sublimation of its directors’ personality or style in the name of storytelling uniformity. The story in Incognito demands more. Here’s how Deadline summarized Incognito:
The protagonist is Zack Overkill, a ruthless villain who is powered by super strength. He is caught and rats out his boss, The Black Death. He goes into witness protection. He’s given a drug to dull his powers and takes a normal guy job as delivering the mail. By the time he discovers that messing with certain drugs restores his power, he has developed something of a conscience. He becomes a vigilante and soon, his exploits become known to The Black Death, who is out for revenge.
And Alvarez might have just caught a break on the writing side. THR is reporting that Daniel Casey, who worked on 10 Cloverfield Lane and has two spec scripts currently in development, has been tasked with penning the adaptation for Alvarez. Considering how menacing and entertaining 10 Cloverfield Lane ended up being, one has to be a bit jazzed by the idea of Casey taking on Overkill. Of course, it’s hard to tell how much of the movie was him and we haven’t really seen anything else by him before, so precautions must be taken. Still, this at least intimates that people are still interested in this rich material and that we may just be one step closer to seeing Brubaker and Phillips’ wild world on the big screen.