Universal looks to young Da Vinci project

Action-adventure is set up with Larry and Charles Gordon

Universal Pictures Intl. is looking to launch an action-adventure centered on the young Leonardo da Vinci, snapping up Jonny Kurzman’s “Leonardo” spec and setting it up with Larry and Charles Gordon.

Story is focused on da Vinci’s quest to stop Renaissance Europe from returning to the Dark Ages.

The painter of the Mona Lisa and the Last Supper was also a mathematician, architect, sculptor, writer, scientist and inventor — including concepts for a helicopter, a tank, solar power, a calculator and the double hull.

Another project exploring the genius of the youthful Da Vinci is also in the works at the Starz pay cable network. “Da Vinci’s Demons,” from BBC Worldwide, picks up the inventor’s life at age 25. David Goyer scripted the pilot and is showrunner. The series has an eight-episode commitment from Starz and is targeted for a 2013 premiere.

Lawrence Gordon Prods. VP Philip Westgren brought “Leonardo” in and is overseeing the project for the producers.

Larry Gordon’s recent producing credits include “Watchmen” and the “Hellboy” films. Charles Gordon was a producer on “Hitman” and “The Girl Next Door.”

Kurzman is represented by Frances Arnold of Rochelle Stevens & Co. and manager Ashley Berns of Circle of Confusion.

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