Deadline is reporting that Bloodshot, a character from the long-defunct, soon-to-be-revived Valiant Comics, has been acquired by Sony Pictures to be developed into a movie.
Valiant was a comics publisher that was in operation from 1989 to 2000. Originally a publisher of licensed comic books based on Nintendo and WWE properties, the company acquired the rights to superhero characters once published by Gold Key Publishing in the 1960s. The company added original characters such as Bloodshot to the Gold Key characters Magnus Robot Fighter, Dr. Solar and Turok to create a shared universe.
Composed mostly of former Marvel Comics writers, artists and editors, Valiant was heavily promoted in the fan press as an alternative to the art first, story second style prevalent at Marvel and Image. Valiant books were typically well-written comics based on high-concepts with solid, yet less flashy, art that supported the story.
Bloodshot first appeared in 1992 in the Valiant comic Eternal Warrior and soon graduated to his own book. He was Angelo Mortalli, a mafia hit man who was set up by his crime family to take the fall for a murder he didn’t commit. He decided to turn states evidence and testify against the mob. But, while in the federal witness protection agency, he was betrayed once again and turned over to an black ops scientific agency charged with developing a superhuman soldier. He was forcibly injected with nanites that gave him heightened senses, agility and healing but also wiped clean his memory. He escaped soon after the process and began trying to find out who he was.
Bloodshot has not appeared in comics since 1998. However, in 2007, the non-Gold Key Valiant characters were purchased by an investment group with the intent to exploit their intellectual property. This includes a new line of comic books, which will start in May of this year, and now, apparently, films as well. Bloodshot is one of the characters purchased by this consortium, but there have been no plans for him to return to comics as of yet.
One of the most interesting aspects of this story is that Sony was motivated to acquire this property due to a spec script from Jeff Wadlow. While Wadlow is an experienced screenwriter (his credits include Cry_Wolf and Prey), spec scripts are seldom even read, let alone inspire studios to go out and option the properties the spec script was based on. That must have been one heck of a script.