Patrick Hughes, director of the successful action-comedy franchise “The Hitman’s Bodyguard,” is setting up his next project at Lionsgate.

Hughes will write and direct “War Machine,” an action/sci-fi film about the final recruits of a grueling special ops boot camp who encounter a deadly force from beyond this world.

Announced by Lionsgate president of production Erin Westerman, the project will be produced by Range Media Partners’ Rich Cook and Hughes’ own label Huge Film.

“Patrick is simply one of the best action directors working today, but what sets his movies apart is his focus on characters that cut through the mayhem. He came to us with a tremendous original idea and we’re thrilled to be shepherding it with Patrick in the driver’s seat,” Westerman said on Tuesday.

Both “Hitman’s Bodyguard” and its sequel “The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard” were released by Lionsgate in 2017 and 2021, respectively. Combined, the films have grossed nearly $250 million worldwide and both debuted at No. 1 (the sequel is still performing despite theater closures and the challenges of the global pandemic). The films star Ryan Reynolds, Samuel L. Jackson and later Salma Hayek.

Hughes’ previous credits include “The Expendables 3.” His next project is “The Man From Toronto” starring Kevin Hart and Woody Harrelson. He is represented by Range Media Partners and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson.

Upcoming Lionsgate projects include the NFL story “American Underdog,” the highly anticipated video game adaptation “Borderlands,” Nicolas Cage’s “The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent” and the fourth chapter in Keanu Reeves’ “John Wick” saga.