By Amanda N’Duka
February 21, 2019
In what was said to be a competitive bidding situation, MGM has acquired the original spec script, Samaritan, from screenwriter Bragi F. Schut and Sylvester Stallone’s Balboa Productions. As Deadline previously reported, Stallone is attached to star in the film, which was announced as part of the forthcoming film slate from Stallone’s recently formed production banner.
Plot details are scarce but the pic has been described as a dark, fresh take on the superhero genre. MGM will develop the project with Stallone and Braden Aftergood of Balboa. Schut will serve as an executive producer.
The studio previously teamed with and Balboa to develop a biopic on the iconic boxer Jack Johnson, the first African American heavyweight champion. In addition, Stallone and Aftergood have lined up projects like Hunter, an adaptation based on James Byron Huggins’s novel about skillful tracker Nathaniel Hunter, Ghost: My Thirty Years as an FBI Undercover Agent, a memoir by 30-year FBI veteran Michael McGowan and Ralph Pezzullo, and a film set in the world of special ops written by retired Army Ranger Max Adams.
Schut penned Sony’s recently released horror thriller, Escape Room, which has grossed over $115 million at the worldwide box office. Up next, he has the thriller Inversion starring Samuel L. Jackson, Paramount’s Big Rig with Michael Bay, and the supernatural thriller The Portrait where he will reteam with the Escape Room producer Neal Moritz.
Schut is repped by Verve, Realm Management, and attorney Rob Szymanski.