Variety is reporting that Dreamworks is in negotiations to acquire the film rights to "I Am Number Four," which is the first of a six-book science fiction series apparently co-written by "A Million Little Pieces" author James Frey. A part of this deal has Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen action-movie-God Michael Bay on board to produce and maybe even direct. The franchise is about nine alien teenagers who escape their home planet before it destroyed by their enemy (cough, Superman, cough). As the high-school aged survivors regroup, the title character realizes he is being hunted by the adversaries who destroyed his home.
Sources told Variety that Dreamworks is working on a high deal of six-figures. Similar to how Steven Spielberg over saw work on the Transformers films, he will be "active in a behind the scenes capacity" for this new project.
The screen rights and publishing rights were being pushed at the same time, with Bay playing salesman at numerous venues. He took it Dreamworks/Disney, Columbia and Universal, J.J Abrams' Bad Robot for Paramount, BenderSpink for New Line and CBS, and Bryan Singer for Fox.
I really hope Michael Bay directs this film, mostly to see if my assumptions are correct. He'll likely turn the nine teenagers into little Sam Witwickys, all with different social spunk, while making full use of the ethnic pallette. Even more guaranteed is his use of the armed forces, which will probably have a huge part in the third act. Somehow, a clean cut poster-boy of a military figure will become allies with "Number Four," and use his all American arsenal to defeat the enemy (blow them back to hell, actually). Shoot, if you've got nine teenagers in the film, why not have one of them enlist?
Even if this movie isn't seen in multiplexes for a half decade (with Transformers 3 and who knows what other movie about things blowing up that Bay has to make), everything can come together faster than an old fart Decepticon can reassemble after a bunch of years. Plus, James Frey clearly has a mind for fantasy, and Michael Bay likes to blow things up into "A Million Little Pieces." This is a match made in movie heaven. Don't screw this one up also, Bay!
What do you think, earthlings? Does this project excite you? Do you still have your James Frey effigy hanging on your bookshelf? Should Shia LeBouf get Bay-sted all over again?!!