Robert Zemeckis Directing Tom Hanks in a 'Major Matt Mason' Movie
It looks like Robert Zemeckis isn't time traveling anytime soon, instead he'll be taking on more sci-fi. In a Hollywood Reporter article, they report on announcements from Tom Hanks' Playtone Productions about three projects, including Neil Gaiman's "American Gods" for HBO, an American Idiot movie based on the Broadway show, and Major Matt Mason, an adaptation of a Mattel action figure that Robert Zemeckis is set to direct in 3D. Whoa! This is also the same movie that has Zemeckis regular Tom Hanks set to star. Zemeckis has obviously been working on a lot of different stuff behind the scenes, but this may not be next.
It was also confirmed recently that Zemeckis would direct Flight with Denzel Washington later this year, and it sounds like that's the case, then this will follow that project. THR says Major Matt Mason is "materializing much sooner" and that Zemeckis is "in talks" to direct a script written by Hanks & Graham Yost (Speed, Broken Arrow, Hard Rain) for Universal. The live-action family film about a space adventure has a tentative budget of over $100 million, but I'm sure they'll re-work that once Zemeckis is in the mix.
Major Matt Mason is a unique toy because it was debuted in 1966 and was a line about an an astronaut who lived and worked on the moon. They were based on design information found in Life Magazine, Air Force Magazine, Jane's, and other aviation- and space-interest periodicals, but then the line was retired in 1969 when we actually landed on the moon. Hanks has said in interviews previous that Major Matt Mason was one of his favorite toys as a kid, which obviously extends his interest in this. And I'm sure the opportunity to work with Zemeckis again is making this project move forward at such a swift rate. We'll keep you updated.