Roman general-turned-emperor-turned-multiple stabbing victim Gaius Julius Caesar is one of those real-life characters whose story has been told time and again in literature and on screens both big and small. But Jonathan Liebsman and Warner Bros. clearly think there’s more cinematic vino to be squeezed from the man’s life-grapes, so they’re collaborating on a new film about him.
Producer Basil Iwanyk, who just worked with Liebsman on Clash of the Titans 2, is spearheading the film, which will apparently follow JC from the time he was dispatched to Spain on a seemingly pointless military mission. That job, however, saw him build the 10th Legion into a formidable fighting force, head home to cross the Rubicon and march on Rome and end up defeating frenemy Pompey to secure the republic’s top seat. Left off for now? His actual assumption of power and the little matter of him getting butchered by his so-called friends in the Senate. Sequel story alert!
According to Deadline, it’s being set up as an epic tale with a meaty central role looking to attract a star. Liebsman – who last directed Battle: Los Angeles – pitched the concept with co-writer Chris Boal, and they brought along choreography ideas for some of the big battles.
Boal, you might have guessed, is the brother of Hurt Locker writer Mark, and has a little experience with Caesar’s story, albeit mostly the end. He has won acclaim for his play 23 Knives, which details the emperor's autopsy.
It remains to be seen whether this will beat the William Broyles-scripted young Caesar tale to the screen, but whichever manages to secure that first slot will likely conquer the other.