‘Gladiators’ leaps to bigscreen

Film to be based on 'American' TV show

Johnny Ferraro, creator of the “American Gladiators” TV franchise, is bringing a live-action adaptation of the property to the bigscreen.

The film will be based on the TV show that first aired in 1988 and has been on the air every year except one during the past 20 years. Most recently, NBC aired a primetime installment in 2008. The show has aired in more than 90 countries, with the format adapted for the local market in 14 of them.

Former Legendary Pictures chief marketing officer Scott Mednick is producing “American Gladiators.” The goal is to create an action story that takes place inside the world Ferraro has created.

“I look forward to creating a compelling story that launches a whole new set of characters,” Mednick said.

Development on the film is being funded through Sunset Pictures, with prexy Martin Guigui exec producing “American Gladiators” alongside Ferraro and Joe Allegro.

Ferraro noted “American Gladiators” was originally conceived as a film, but the property “took a detour and became a TV phenomenon.” Mednick, who recently began developing a film installment in the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles franchise, has producing credits including “300,” “Superman Returns” and the upcoming “Where the Wild Things Are.”