Warner Brothers and producer Joel Silver have tapped John Stevenson to make his live-acting directing debut on the reboot of Masters of the Universe. Variety says that Stevenson (best known for directing Kung Fu Panda) will be directing a film more in line with the toy-line than the somewhat disastrous 1987 film.
The script, written by Justin Marks, was acquired by Warner Brothers in 2007, and will be produced by Joel Silver, with toy-maker Mattel's Barry Waldo as executive producer.
Stevenson was initially reluctant to work on the film, based on his memories of the 1987 film starring Dolph Lungdren and Frank Langella, but his mind was changed by a visit to Mattel headquarters where he got to see the visuals created by the toymaker staff.
"There was this locked bunker that you had to be escorted into," Stevenson said. "It was filled with art, some generated by the Mattel artists, and I looked around, and said, 'I get it.' We started formulating a specific vision for costumes, creatures, architecture, and the creation of a mythology and look for a whole world we'll create."
Waldo says that Stevenson's vision to elevate Masters of the Universe matched Mattel's desire to make a high-quality, big Hollywood film around the characters. "John had such passion that we found ourselves trying to run to catch up with his vision."
Masters of the Universe follows the story of Prince Adam of Eternia, a land of magic that finds itself coming under fire from the evil forces of Skeletor. Prince Adam is granted the power of the Castle Greyskull to transform into He-Man to protect Eternia.