From one science-fiction world to another! Just a few years after co-writing the screenplay for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, screenwriter Gary Whitta teased on social media Wednesday that his next project might be a reboot of a different sci-fi classic, 1984’s The Last Starfighter.
“Okay, probably shouldn’t show you this so early, but here’s a little something I’ve been tinkering on with my co-writer Jonathan Betuel. You might recognize the ships,” Whitta wrote on Twitter, alongside concept art images of The Last Starfighter-style spacecraft. “Thanks to the amazing Matt Allsopp (lead concept artist on Rogue One) for creating these images for us.”
Originally directed by Nick Castle and released in 1984, The Last Starfighter told the story of teenager Alex Rogan (Lance Guest), whose exceptional prowess at the arcade game Starfighter inspires actual aliens to recruit his help defending their interstellar empire from evil invaders. Betuel wrote the original film.
Whitta could not be immediately reached for comment. He followed up with a second tweet telling fans, “Might have a bit more for you later,” alongside an image of Alex playing the Starfighter arcade game in the original film.
Later in the day, i09’s James Whitbrook asked Whitta a few questions about the project. Whitta confirmed that the project was still in the early stages, but that “we’ve had a lot of talks with Universal.” Remaking The Last Starfighter has been a difficult prospect in the past because Betuel owns a significant portion of the film rights and hasn’t been interested in a remake, but together he and Whitta “have a fully developed story that is a combination of reboot and sequel that we both think honors the legacy of the original film while passing the torch to a new generation,” according to Whitta. Read the full Q&A here.