Legendary stuntman Robert ‘Evel’ Knievel is one of those fascinating real-life figures that Hollywood just can’t get enough of. And neither, it would seem can Magic Mike’s Channing Tatum, as the prolific producer / Handsome McGee is lining up a movie about the man with Sony.
Known to his family as Robert Craig Knievel, Evel became a household name in the 1970s for his ambitious motorcycle jumps. Leaping across buses and anything else he could round up, he was known for his flashy patriotic outfits and the 433 bones he broke when several stunts went wrong. But despite liver troubles, he survived to 69, dying in 2007.
At least two movies have been made about him, one a 1971 effort called Evel Knievel that starred George Hamilton, the other 1977’s Viva Knievel! which featured Evel himself in the lead.
Then in 2004, there was talk of McG making a biopic about Knievel called Pure Evel, but it stalled in development.
With the hot streak he’s on at the moment (Magic Mike streak pun entirely unintended), Tatum certainly has the power to at least get this thing in motion. He has the rights to Stuart Baker’s 2008 book Life Of Evel and has set producing partner / Mike scriptwriter Reid Carolin to adapt it with Mike DeLucas and Dana Brunetti, who just picked up the gig of bringing 50 Shades Of Grey to screens, on to oversee it for the studio.