Paramount and J.J. Abrams’ Bad Robot have settled on a couple of screenwriters to pen their adaptation of the graphic novel-picture book Boilerplate: History’s Mechanical Marvel. Deadline reports that JD Payne and Patrick McKay will handle scripting duties for the pic, which takes place in the late 19th and early 20th century and tells the story of the world’s first robot who “fought alongside Terry Roosevelt and Lawrence of Arabia, journeyed to the South Pole and was involved in the silent movie business before disappearing on the battlefields of World War I.” The idea for the story is fantastic, and hopefully Abrams and Co. can pull off an equally fascinating feature film.
Payne and McKay have yet to have one of their scripts produced, but they wrote the Goliath pic that Relativity is developing (and may or may not star Dwayne Johnson and Taylor Lautner), and are also penning a feature film adaptation of the Spike TV series Deadliest Warrior. Hit the jump to read a synopsis for the graphic novel.
Meet Boilerplate, the world’s first robot soldier—not in a present-day military lab or a science-fiction movie, but in the past, during one of the most fascinating periods of U.S. history. Designed by Professor Archibald Campion in 1893 as a prototype, for the self-proclaimed purpose of “preventing the deaths of men in the conflicts of nations,” Boilerplate charged into combat alongside such notables as Teddy Roosevelt and Lawrence of Arabia. Campion and his robot also circled the planet with the U.S. Navy, trekked to the South Pole, made silent movies, and hobnobbed with the likes of Mark Twain and Nikola Tesla.
You say you’ve never heard of Boilerplate before? That’s because this book is the fanciful creation of a husbandand-wife team who have richly imagined these characters and inserted them into accurate retellings of history. This full-color chronicle is profusely illustrated with graphics mimicking period style, including photos, paintings, posters, cartoons, maps, and even stereoscope cards. Part Jules Verne and part Zelig, it’s a great volume for a broad range of fans of science fiction, history, and robots. [Amazon]