Writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, the guys behind the highly anticipated action horror film Zombieland, plan to take on some serious subject matter for their next projects. The pair has been 'hush hush' about the Spiderman spinoff, Venom script they wrote, but opened up to FirstShowing about "a big, epic, sci-fi war movie" called Earth vs. Moon which they sold as a pitch to Universal with Scott Stuber (The Kingdom, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, The Wolf Man) producing.
Wernick describes it as a...
...hardcore, 300-style movie with some comic relief to it, but about the Earth and a colony on the moon essentially in a civil war.
Because that's exactly what people were thinking when they watched Zack Snyder's 300... where's the funny?
Set about 300 or 400 years in the future, Reese explained that that they originally thought it would be a great video game, but decided to pitch as a movie instead, since that's what they know how to do best.
It's about two societies at war, but it's also about a family, not at war, but a fractured family. Half of them have gone to the moon and the other half are still on Earth and so they are on opposite sides of this conflict and we wanted to make sure that as big of a movie as it's going to be, it works on a small level. It works on a personal level, the way we like to think about Zombieland working. It's just this huge post-apocalyptic landscape, but we really want it to work on an interpersonal level for just a few people who are the stars.
He went on to explain that the concept comes from a TED speech that Stephen Hawking gave "about the necessity to colonize other worlds because of the inherent dangers on Earth, nuclear dangers, biological dangers, and the need to have a back-up society."
They go on to say that it's big budget or nothing, explaining:
[It's such a] huge movie [that] it's either going to be made at a grand scale for $200 million or not at all.
Before movies like District 9 or Moon came out, I would have agreed that a Sci-Fi undertaking with a scope that big would be impossible to make with out more than a hundred million dollars. But we've all seen what those films did with their modest budgets of $30 million and $5 million, respectively. Then again, with James Cameron's Avatar possibly being the most expensive film ever made, I can't blame the guys for wanting something to look that visually stunning.
The writing partners are currently working on a second draft of the screenplay for Earth Vs. Moon, which FirstShowing speculates is being pitched to directors and actors around town, because the moment they find the right director, this will probably move very quickly.
If the film ever gets off the ground, Reese and Wernick have a pretty major star in mind for the lead, "welcome to Erff" himself, mega star Will Smith. So much so that they even named the lead character Will in hopes of grabbing his attention.
Are you ready for the interplanetary(moonary) Civil War in Earth Vs. Moon?