Hollywood is crawling with bug-themed projects right now – a test reel for Edgar Wright’s superhero movie Ant-Man was recently released, and more details emerged on the Human Fly feature Deadline reported on last Wednesday. Based on some inside information from SlashFilm, the new developments on Human Fly are quite intriguing.
The two concepts are similar in that their subjects both occupy the Marvel comic book universe (Human Fly had a 19-issue run from 1977 to 1979), but unlike Ant-Man, the character Human Fly was based on a real-life masked daredevil who rivaled Evel Knievel in the 1970s. The Fly (AKA Rick Rojatt) made a living out of scaling buildings, riding atop airplanes, and other death-defying stunts supposedly made possible by a 60 percent reconstructed steel body, the result of a near-fatal car crash. Naturally, he and his stranger-than-fiction career – not his illustrated alter ego – will provide the basis for the film.
Despite having a story that practically writes itself, The Human Fly has taken years to get off the ground. Fortunately, producer Alan Brewer and director Steven Goldmann (Trailer Park of Terror) bought the rights – along with screenwriter Tony Babinski, the two have been attached to the project for some time. With the help of Eisenberg-Fisher Productions and producer James Reach, they can finally bring the larger-than-life character to the big screen.
Goldmann will helm the indie feature, and he told SlashFilm that he wants to craft a period piece that focuses on the relationship between the the Fly and his promoter, Joe Ramacieri. Ramacieri was a sausage maker and con man who saw the Fly as a way to break into the entertainment business.
The director also compared the film to two other creative biopics, Catch Me if You Can and Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, which is fair considering that both works depend more on subjectivity than fact (Confessions was based on TV producer Chuck Barris’s claims that he was a hit man for the CIA, none of which were ever proven). Being that Goldmann wants to use actual footage of stunts and events, I would even throw Bronson in there, but I doubt Human Fly will experiment as boldly with the genre’s conventions. Even so, the mystery of the Fly and his manufactured mythology will fit in perfectly with these films, and I look forward to seeing what Goldmann and his crew do with the story.
Have you read the Human Fly comic books? Were you aware of their origins?
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