Tommy Wirkola Up For Afterburn

He may direct Gerard Butler

After gaining plenty of notice for Nazi zombie horror romp Dead Snow back in 2009, writer-director Tommy Wirkola has already seen the gates of Hollywood swing open to welcome him for oddball fantasy twister Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. With that finished and awaiting release, he’s turning his attention to other jobs, agreeing to re-write and direct graphic novel adaptation Afterburn for Relativity and star Gerard Butler.

You may recall that Afterburn has been sitting in the development black hole for a few years now, originally announced back in 2008 when Paul Ens and Scott Chitwood’s comic book series was snapped up for adaptation with Tobey Maguire in the lead.

It cooled its heels until late 2010, when Gerard Butler jumped aboard, ready to play the leader of a group of mercenaries who make a living scouring a solar flare-ravaged Earth for valuables. Their constant challenges? Rival looting parties and the mutant creatures roaming the barren, barely-habitable surface of our planet.

Christian Gudegast was the last name attached to the script, but Wirkola will be doing his own pass before the project can even think about getting to the next level. And it may even lose Butler if the schedules don’t line up. So if you were hoping for Afterburn to wrench free of the development gravity well, you might have to go on waiting a little longer.

Wirkola’s latest, the aforementioned Witch Hunters, is now set to arrive on January 11 next year. We’re hoping that’s because A) Paramount wanted to capitalise on Jeremy Renner’s M:I – Ghost Protocol / Avengers / Bourne Legacy momentum and B) to get the film out of the way of the other fairytale revamps.