Steven Soderbergh may pull the long-gestating “Man from U.N.C.L.E” film out of development hell.
The Hollywood Reporter says the “Ocean’s Eleven” helmer is playing buoy to the drowning property, attaching himself as director.
The film, based on the small-screen spy series that ran on NBC from 1964-68, has been in the works since the ’90s with David Dobkin (“Wedding Crashers”) attached to direct at last check. Dobkin remains onboard as producer.
Scott Z. Burns, who wrote Soderbergh’s “Contagion”, is in negotiations to write the script.
James Bond creator Ian Fleming created “Man from U.N.C.L.E” which told of two secret agents, played by Robert Vaughn and David McCallum, who work for a fictitious secret international law-enforcement agency called U.N.C.L.E. (the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement). 105 episodes were produced.
In an interview with TV Guide in 2007, McCallum and Vaughn said it’d be “impossible” to make a “Man from U.N.C.L.E” movie in today’s times.
”It’s absolutely impossible. You have a Russian and an American fighting crime — you can’t frame that now because there is no cold war. You can’t do it as a period piece because you already have the original show from that period. You can’t do “Son of U.N.C.L.E.” or “Daughter of U.N.C.L.E.” To bring it back in any way, shape or form would not be a good idea”, said McCallum.
Adds Vaughn, “I think David’s observation is correct in that it cannot be done as a period piece, it would look silly, but with an updating of the characters, I think it will be done. Every year I hear that it’s going to be turned into a movie. I’ve seen no script.”