Sean Penn Sets His Sights on New 'Prone Gunman' Action Franchise?

November 13, 2012
Source: THR

Sean Penn

While the title Prone Gunman sounds like it might be a Wayans Brothers parody of the short-lived "X-Files" spin-off TV show "The Lone Gunmen," it's actually a new action thriller in the works at Silver Pictures based on Jean-Patrick Manchette's spy novel. THR reports that two-time Oscar winner Sean Penn is attached to star in the story of an international operative who wants to get out of the game and marry his childhood sweetheart, but when he's betrayed by his superiors, he goes on the run across Europe to stay alive. Sounds like every spy thriller ever made, but there might be something brewing under the surface.

Manchette, the author of the book, leaned left politically and used his French noir stories as a way to comment on politics and the world around him, so perhaps the ideology is what attracted the similarly left-leaning Penn to this project. The book description from Amazon mentions that the violent story "shatters as many illusions about life and politics as bodies," so it sounds like there's an opportunity to make this a bit more than a standard cat-and-mouse thriller.

As with seemingly all tentpole films these days, there are already whispers of turning this into a franchise, but Manchette only wrote one book with this character, so they'd have to make up future installments as they went along. No director is attached yet, but Vantage Point and Dredd 3D helmer Peter Travis adapted this screenplay, so perhaps he'll end up behind the camera. Cool?

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