With the Marvel Cinematic Universe going gangbusters and the DC Extended Universe getting a major jolt in the arm, the Valiant Cinematic Universe needs to gets serious if they want to compete. The latest move regarding its Shadowman film shows they are very serious.
The Hollywood Reporter has the news that writer-director-producer Reginald Hudlin has been hired to direct the Shadowman He will also be rewriting the screenplay by J. Michael Straczynski with Salem showrunner Adam Simon.
Hudlin broke onto the scene with 1990’s House Party, which he wrote and directed. He also directed films such as Boomerang, The Great White Hype and Ladies’ Man. Hudlin earned an Oscar nomination for producing 2012’s Django Unchained. His latest film project is the forthcoming Thurman Marshal biopic, Marshall.
He also has comic book writing cred. Hudlin wrote Black Panther and Marvel Knights Spider-Man for Marvel Comics.
He also wrote a Django Unchained tie-in series for DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint.
Shadowman was created in 1992 by Jim Shooter, Steve Englehart and Mike Manley and the character went through three different incarnations in its publishing history. First, he was an African-American Jazz musician who gain powers through mysterious means. He became an urban vigilante with mystical overtones. Video game company Acclaim bought Valiant in 1997, and they revamped Shadowman, playing up his supernatural elements. He became a zombie hitman who fights demons from a place called Deadside. Valiant revamped the character again after the company restarted in 2012. He became what could be described as a combination of he two prior incarnations.
Acclaim adapted the character into a series of successful video games in the late-1990s to early 2000s. Shadowman’s last dalliance with film came in 1999,when Ice Cube inquired about making a Shadowman film. However, Acclaim turned down the offer, preferring to focus on video games for the character.
People have been trying to adapt Valiant Comics’ properties as far back as 2008, but things started to really gain steam in 2015 when Valiant entered into an agreement with DMG Entertainment to develop its properties for film. Originally, the plans only extended to Valiant books Bloodshot and Harbinger, but other properties such as Archer and Armstrong have entered development.