James Patterson’s most popular character, Alex Cross, is getting a bigscreen reboot with Tyler Perry in the lead.
The multihyphenate makes his first foray into a high-profile action role with “I, Alex Cross,” an origin tale of the detective-psychologist first brought to the bigscreen with Morgan Freeman in the part for “Kiss the Girls” and “Along Came a Spider.”
Rob Cohen is on board to helm the pic for QED Intl.
“I am very pleased to see my most well-known character in the safe hands of Rob and Tyler,” Patterson said in a statement. “I look forward to a fulfilling collaboration to reinvigorate the films based on my books.”
Patterson and Kerry Williamson penned the first draft of the script, which Marc Moss will touch up. Pic will be produced by QED’s Bill Block and Paul Hanson along with Leopoldo Gout, with Patterson and Steve Bowen exec producing.
“Kiss the Girls” was a modest success for Paramount in 1997, grossing $60 million domestically; 2001 follow-
up “Along Came a Spider” did slightly better with a $74 million domestic haul and more than $105 million worldwide.
The self-made Perry, meanwhile, has generated an estimated $1 billion in revenue from his 10 films, books, plays and DVD library, and he most recently directed “For Colored Girls.”
Perry has written, directed, produced and acted in nearly all of his films (and did a cameo in “Star Trek”), including the upcoming “Madea’s Big Happy Family.”
No distrib is onboard yet for “I, Alex Cross,” and QED is planning to selling worldwide rights at the European Film Market in Berlin. Lensing starts in June, with no release date set.
Cohen has several films in development including “xXx: The Return of Xander Cage.”
Perry and Cohen are repped by WME.
Patterson is repped by CAA.