Tom Cruise and Sam Raimi Working Together on Sleeper?!
by Alex Billington
August 19, 2008
Yep it's true. Sam Raimi is producing an adaptation of Wildstorm's "Sleeper" comic book with Tom Cruise apparently "loosely attached" to star. Obviously Cruise's involvement is not set in stone, but his interest has boosted this comic book adaptation into the spotlight. The story centers on an operative whose fusion with an alien artifact makes him impervious to pain and allows him to pass it on to others through skin contact. He is placed undercover in a villainous organization by an intelligence agency and falls for a member of the group, named Miss Misery. Reminds me a lot of Pitt and Jolie's Mr. & Mrs. Smith. Raimi is producing the film alongside of Josh Donen separate from his horror company Ghost House Pictures.
The biggest issue with this project lies in complicated rights issues. Everyone is familiar with the Watchmen case that Warner Brothers is currently fighting, and considering DC Comics is a Warner Brothers company, they're being a bit more sensitive this time. "Sleeper" is actually a spin-off series from a comic called "WildC.A.T.s" and also features characters from another spin-off comic called "Gen 13." Rights to both of those comics have already been scooped up by other studios previously, even before DC Comics bought "Sleeper" in 1999. Both Sony and Regency previously passed up adapting the comic due to these rights issues. No writer or director has been attached yet.
That headline is a bit deceiving, because Sam Raimi producing and Tom Cruise starring doesn't necessarily mean we're going to see anything amazing. Raimi is a solid producer, but he's a better director. Cruise needs some good roles and after Tropic Thunder, I'm looking forward to what career choices he makes next. "Sleeper" definitely seems like a great move in the right direction, although I'm always up for anything action-packed starring Tom Cruise (another Mission: Impossible directed by J.J. Abrams again anyone?). AICN says the comic "is a powerful read" and is "one hell of a tragic, yet inspiring, exciting, yet introspective story." Should be an interesting project to watch develop, with or without Cruise starring. Anyone else?