As Hollywood looks to genres other than comic book movies to reinvigorate, it seems another “grounded cop thriller with sci-fi elements” is on the way, in the form of Hypnotic. Studio 8 has announced that director Robert Rodriguez and writer Max Borenstein will collaborate on the upcoming project – with Borenstein tasked with re-writing an original script by Rodriguez, and Rodriguez directing and producing.
Over the years, we’ve seen this specific type of movie repeatedly – from I, Robot and Minority Report, to Demolition Man and two versions of Robocop – culminating, most recently, with Bright on Netflix. The important point to note there, though, is the vast range of premise and plot involved in each instance. This specific genre is not simply the same story retold in a slightly different time or setting – but is, instead, fertile ground for the exploration of bigger themes.
The fact, then, that Max Borenstein has been engaged to rewrite a script by Robert Rodriguez is the element that makes this story very interesting. Borenstein (who created and produced the 2015 television adaptation of Minority Report) is the creative driving force behind the Hollywood Godzilla franchise, having written 2014’s Godzilla, 2017’s Kong: Skull Island, and 2019’s Godzilla: King Of The Monsters. While the latter project has yet to reach theaters, both Godzilla and Kong: Skull Island demonstrated the writer’s ability to take fantastical notions and intricately weave them into a grounded world of science, technology and world history.
For his part, Robert Rodriguez brings a very different, very specific aesthetic to the project. With films such as From Dusk Till Dawn and Planet Terror, he’s demonstrated his ability to also tie the outlandish into the every day – but he delivers his version with a more cartoonish type of action and humour.
The collaboration of these two creators for Hypnotic, then, makes for a very intriguing prospect indeed – not least because it’s reported that Studio 8 considers the film to have franchise potential. As always, watch this space for more.