At 80 years old, acclaimed film director Ridley Scott has never been busier. Last year, he directed the film Alien: Covenant, the latest in the long-running series he began in 1979 and the much-talked-about drama All the Money in the World. Now, it appears Scott will be teaming up with Walt Disney Pictures for a new film about the origins of King Arthur’s legendary sidekick, Merlin.
The film would be based on the 12-book young adult series, The Saga of Merlin, by celebrated author T.A. Barron, giving plenty of material for a potential big-screen franchise.
Philippa Boyens, a frequent partner of director Peter Jackson who co-wrote The Lord of the Rings trilogy, King Kong, The Lovely Bones, and The Hobbit trilogy, is writing the script for the Merlin film.
After a busy 2017, Scott is in talks to make Merlin his next film and would also produce with his production company, Scott Free.
Barron’s Merlin Saga began in 1996 with The Lost Years of Merlin and concluded with 2007’s The Eternal Flame; a companion encyclopedia, The Book of Magic, was released in 2011.
This is actually one of two projects Disney has in the works that will feature the character of Merlin; a live-action version of their 1963 animated film, The Sword in the Stone, is also being developed.
Scott has frequently been in the news in recent weeks due to the controversy surrounding All the Money in the World and his comments regarding the Blade Runner and Alien franchises.
Kevin Spacey was originally set to star in All the Money in the World before his sexual harassment accusations led Scott to quickly reshoot all of Spacey’s scenes with actor Christopher Plummer.
Scott also shocked fans by announcing plans to move future Alien sequels away from the titular monsters in order to focus more on the dangers of artificial intelligence. He also recently criticized Blade Runner 2049 (the sequel to his 1982 film) for being too long.