Michael Bay to direct Will Smith in I AM LEGEND...
Hey folks, Harry here... And I'm actually very very very conflicted by the news I've just received. It seems that Michael Bay is putting the final touches on his deal to direct I AM LEGEND, based upon Richard Matheson's astonishingly wonderful novel that has spawn two movies thus far... THE OMEGA MAN with Charlton Heston and THE LAST MAN ON EARTH with Vincent Price.
His Neville will be played by Will Smith.
My instant and most immediate reaction to that is, "Fucking hell no!"
But then I remember that Will has completely changed his physical body type whilst shooting ALI for Michael Mann... That Will Smith does have the ability to actually be a good actor, but then I remember that this isn't an actor's director directing Will this time out. It is Michael Bay, who... while I love the grandeur and over-the-top go for broke audacity of his films... I will admit that in every single film of his, the actors involved usually are at their least, lost amongst all that is swirling around them.
Michael Bay is also not know for creating ATMOSPHERE and DREAD and FOREBODING. 3 KEY INGREDIENTS in making I AM LEGEND, three ingredients that had me excited about the project when it was in Ridley Scott's hands.
Watching the recent THE DEVIL'S BACKBONE and based on the buzz surrounding BLADE 2, there's a part of me that wishes to god this project was in Guillermo Del Toro's hands... But that is a dream that will never come to pass... Instead we have to deal with Michael Bay doing it.
God, I don't want Michael Bay doing this project. If he was, I'd want him to go back and shoot the first draft by Mark Protosevich... by far the best draft of I AM LEGEND that has been floating about... they only need to fix the very end 5 pages of that draft... otherwise it was perfect.
Fears: Atmosphere will be lost by rapid fire editing. Neville's gallow humor will play to big with Will Smith doing it. The Melancholy will be replaced with production numbers. The Inevitably badly handled romantic interlude between Will Smith and whomever they find to be his babe.
Pluses: It will be a HUGE production with Michael that will 'look great' no matter what. The action scenes will be intense.
If by a miracle, Michael Bay can shoot this film with the soul that it needs, I'll be ecstatic, but I fear that is hoping for the impossible.
Meanwhile, I just talked to producer Neal Moritz, who denies that any movement is taking place on this, my source is very solid though. Hmmmm, strange.
To the idiots in Talk Back roasting me. Did you ever think that I had MULTIPLE SOURCES confirming this story (I do) and that I have had a great deal of experience with Producers that A) Either didn't know the truth or B) Couldn't tell it? Meanwhile... You'll see.