The gentlemen over at Variety’s BFDealMemo would have you believe that they heart of this little story is that 20th Century Fox’s new chief Peter Chernin has made his first acquisition. Nope, that’s not it.
The real story here is that Fox is taking a page out of the Bible, smashing it together with a page out of the Zack Snyder guide to filmmaking in slow-motion and finishing it up by saving the Jews. Not bad for Chernin’s first major acquisition. The project is said to be a 300-style telling of the story of Moses. The tale will start with his near death as an infant to his adoption into the Egyptian royal family, his defiance of the Pharoah and deliverance of the Hebrews from enslavement.
The project is currently in the hands of writers Adam Cooper and Bill Collage, who are currently working on the Moby Dick adaptation for Wanted director Timur Bekmambetov over at Universal. According to Variety, that script is done along with extensive pre-viz work, leaving the two scribes free to concentrate on parting the Red Sea. The popular mythical and magical elements inherent in the Book of Exodus will be there–including the plagues visited upon Egypt and the parting of the Red Sea–but the Cooper & Collage version will also include new elements of Moses’ life that the writers culled from Rabbinical Midrash and other historical sources.
It’s an interesting project, as they will be telling the Moses story using the same green screen strategy employed with 300, but there is no word yet on what visual style the film will have. Will it have that stark, comic book-esque look, the hyper-realism that Zack Snyder chose to honor Frank Miller’s original vision. Or will it be something entirely different. Word is that Chernin (who is producing with Dylan Clark) wants the film to feel more like an epic adventure story, like 300 or Braveheart, rather than the more straightforward character tale told in Cecile B. DeMille’s 1956 film The Ten Commandments. I’m not exactly sure what that means, as DeMille’s film was quite the epic adventure, if you ask me.
Alas, this thing is happening. I’m sure we’ll hear more soon once a script is in play and a director signs on.
What do you think of the story of Moses told in the style of 300?