Guy Ritchie Returning to Joel Silver's Sgt. Rock Adaptation
Posted 07.19.11 by BrentJS
Guy Ritchie has been toying with the idea of making a live-action comic book movie for several years now. Ritchie's first stab at a comic book property was back in 2007 when he was first attached to direct producer Joel Silver's (Die Hard, The Matrix) planned adaptation of DC Comics' classic hard-nosed war hero, Sgt. Rock. But, when Warner Bros. (WB) decided they wanted to move forward with Sherlock Holmes, also produced by Silver, and they wanted Ritchie at the helm, the British director jumped ship.
After Sherlock Holmes, Ritchie once again made a pass at a comic book movie, signing up to direct an adaptation based on the DC Comics character Lobo for WB. But, once again, WB decided they would rather have Ritchie direct the sequel to Sherlock Holmes, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, and he set his comic book movie aspirations aside. Now, Twitch has reported that WB is finally ready to make Silver's Sgt. Rock movie and it could be the next movie that Ritchie directs.
Sgt. Rock is the most popular comic book hero to emerge from the then-popular war comics craze of the late-50s, early-60s. Created by Robert Kanigher and Joe Kubert, a prototype of the character appeared in G.I. Combat #68 (Jan. 1959), but he was referred to simply as "The Rock" and was not assigned a rank. Several months later, in Our Army at War #81 (April 1959), "Rocky" was given the rank of Sergeant and appeared with his "Easy Company" US Army infantry regiment. In Our Army at War #83 (June 1959), the character makes his first full appearance as the character we know today as Sgt. Rock.
Formerly a steel worker from Pittsburgh, Rock enlisted following Pearl Harbor and was sent to North Africa as a private, but he was quickly promoted after his superiors were killed in action and he distinguished himself as a leader. Rock's missions took him all over North Africa, Italy, and Northwest Europe. It has never been fully established whether Rock survived WWII, but Kanigher wrote in Sgt. Rock (formerly Our Army at War) #374 that "[Rock] and Easy Company live only, and will eventually die, to the last man, in World War II."
After Ritchie left the project the first time, Francis Lawrence (I Am Legend) was brought in to direct, but his version would have taken Rock and Easy Company from the trenches of WWII and flung them into a future war. According to Twitch, the future war concept has been abandoned and Sgt. Rock will be back in WWII where he belongs. Ritchie has yet to formally announce that he will direct, but he is apparently already "supervising the current draft of the screenplay."