Visual effects supervisor Matthew Gratzner will make his directorial debut on the feature adaptation of UFO, based on the 1970s TV series.

According to Variety, Gratzner was visual effects supervisor on the upcoming Martin Scorsese-directed Shutter Island, and his vfx resume includes The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor, Hancock, Iron Man and Alien: Resurrection.

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The film was optioned from rights holder ITV Global by the Robert Evans Co., where producers Evans, Henri Kessler and Avi Haas will be joined by Gratzner's New Deal Studios to move the project forward.

A script has been written by Ryan Gaudet and Joseph Kanarek. Gratzner's studio has begun developing concept art and pre-visualizations; after they're completed, the picture will be shopped for financing.

Like the Gerry Anderson series, the film will revolve around Shado (Supreme Headquarters Alien Defense Organization), a secret military operation hidden beneath a Hollywood studio, whose operatives battle an alien race that has been kidnapping and killing humans for decades and using the body parts.

"The story, characters and situations Mr. Anderson created in 'UFO' are timeless and engaging," Gratzner said. "My vision is to utilize visual effects as a supportive storytelling device that draws audiences into this universe."

No production date has been set.