Twentieth Century Fox has assembled a creative team to transform 1980s TV series “The A-Team” into a summer 2010 film.
Studio has set Joe Carnahan to direct and Ridley Scott to produce, with Tony Scott exec producing through their Scott Free banner.
Also producing are Jules Daly and Stephen J. Cannell, the latter of whom created the original TV series.
Carnahan will team with Brian Bloom to polish a script by Skip Woods (“G.I. Joe”). The intention is to start production by June for a June 11, 2010, release.
Fox has struggled to find a way to exploit the branded TV show while avoiding the series’ campy tone. Director John Singleton had most recently been attached to such an attempt before dropping out. Woods came in and started over.
“Tony and I feel that marrying this Scott Free project with Joe’s sensibility will result in a fast-paced, exciting franchise, one we hope will be around for years to come,” Scott said.
Carnahan and the Scott brothers say they will use the original premise of the series as the template for an action film. In the original, four Vietnam vets convicted of armed robbery escape from military prison and became do-gooder mercenaries.
The Middle East will replace Vietnam as the place the four did their tour of duty, but Carnahan said the origin story is the jumping-off point.
“You can … make a film that reflects on the real world without losing the great sense of fun and the velocity of action in a classic summer popcorn film,” Carnahan said.
Carnahan has put his Pablo Escobar film “Killing Pablo” on the back burner. The project was complicated by the bankruptcy filing made by the Yari Film Group.
“I am determined to make that movie there or elsewhere, but it’s an interesting time in Hollywood, and you have to be aware when you get the opportunity to step into a business model that is working,” Carnahan said, noting that many of the top-grossing studio films are based on branded properties.
“This was a coveted property, and reimagining a show that I remembered as a kid was tough to turn down,” Carnahan said. “Fox hired me to make it as emotional, real and accessible as possible without cheesing it up.”