The long planned Doc Savage film, which will be directed and produced by Shane Black—who is also now involved with the Predator reboot—has been slow to get started, and there’s been little news; until now.
The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that Black has met with the currently hot actor Chris Hemsworth (Thor, the Avengers, Thor: the Dark World, Snow White and the Huntsman) about starring in the film version of the famous ‘science detective’, who first appeared in pulp magazines written by Lester Dent in the thirties, and has been the hero of many novels ever since. There was a satirical film version in 1975 called Doc Savage: Man of Bronze starring Ron Ely, but it flopped because it was too comical and silly. (No doubt inspired by the humorous, self-parodying Batman series of the 1960s.)
The Hollywood Reporter writes, “Black is also very actively developing Doc Savage, the adaptation of the 1930s pulp hero for Sony. He recently met with Chris Hemsworth for the title role, but it’s unclear when that project would shoot since it’s still grappling with budgetary issues. Sony, however, does consider Savage one of its priorities.”
Black stated in the interview that the actor who portrays the title character has to be a, “perfect physical specimen,” who both impresses and intimidates people with the “symmetry and perfection that he exudes.”
The Doc Savage tales are about Dr. Clark Savage; a man who was brought up by his scientist father and a group of Think-Tank geniuses to be the perfect human being–mentally and physically. He was described by author Dent as having, “Einstein’s genius, Sherlock Holmes’ deductive abilities, Tarzan’s outstanding physical abilities, and Abraham Lincoln’s moral goodness.” He is a doctor, scientist, inventor, explorer and martial arts expert. Savage is independently wealthy, due to his gold mine in South America. Headquartered in the Empire State Building, Savage works with his quintet of sidekicks, known as the ‘Fabulous 5’ (each one a genius in his own rite) to “right wrongs and punish evil-doers”. (He also has an unexplained Bronze-colored tan, hence his nickname, the “Man of Bronze”.)
Interesting, Hemsworth’s name is the one that has been tossed around the most by internet fans of the character ever since the movie version was first announced. Whether this factored into Black’s decision to meet with Hemsworth is uncertain at this point. If Hemsworth ends up starring in the film, fans should be very happy.