By Anthony Breznican
May 07, 2013 at 08:14 PM EDT
From Stark … to Savage.
Shane Black, who is hot off the massive success of Iron Man 3, will co-write and direct an adventure film based on the 1930s and ’40s pulp her Doc Savage, Sony Pictures has announced.
The studio said Black, whose previous films include Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and writing Lethal Weapon, is considering it as his next project.
But generations of genre fans might be forgiven for asking: Who is Doc Savage???
Although Doc Savage was a hit on radio and in pulp magazines and comic books, he has never had a successful film adaptation. After many false starts, Doc Savage: The Man of Bronze was finally produced in 1975 but was a critical and commercial flop. Subsequent efforts to resurrect him have also failed, even as other similar characters — such as Indiana Jones — became massively popular.
If Iron Man‘s Tony Stark is a self-described billionaire/playboy/philanthropist who fights corporate terrorists and alien invaders in his spare time, Doc Savage is a scientist/physician/inventor/explorer and all-around tough guy with near super-human intelligence.
Black has already co-written the script with Anthony Bagarozzi and Charles Mondry. Neal H. Moritz, best known for the Fast & Furious series, is producing the project with Ori Marmur (Battle: Los Angeles) and Michael Uslan (executive producer of The Dark Knight trilogy.)
“We couldn’t be more excited to be building a franchise from the ground up with Shane and this team,” Hannah Minghella, president of production for the studio, said in a statement. “Shane and Neal have a fantastic understanding of the character and a great take on the material and we can’t wait to get this production up and running.”

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