Soderbergh Finds The Man From UNCLE

Can he get the spies to the big screen?

Soderbergh Finds The Man From UNCLE

by James White |
Published on

We all know that Steven Soderbergh is like the directing equivalent of a shark – he keeps on moving, in his case, between genres. And while basing a movie on an old TV show doesn’t exactly sound like Soderbergh’s usual modus operandi, he’s got remake form with the Ocean’s films and it would certainly be a new challenge. Which might explain why he’s in early discussions to tackle Warner Bros.’ The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

The studio has been trying to crack this particular nut since at least the mid-1990s after picking up the rights to the 1960s spy show. Robert Vaughn and David McCallum starred as Napoleon Solo and Illya Kuryakin, agents of the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement who battled worldwide threats and were particularly committed to wiping out THRUSH (Technological Hierarchy for the Removal of Undesirables and the Subjugation of Humanity, not a bird, and never actually named that on the TV series, just the novels that followed). The show, which was partly created by Ian Fleming and saw the likes of Robert Towne and Harlan Ellison contributing scripts, ran for 105 episodes.

Warners has ploughed through writers and directors in its mission to get the concept up on the big screen, with Max Borenstein’s script as the most recent draft and David Dobkin the last director attached.

But with Soderbergh now seriously considering the idea, the producers have Scott Z Burns – who wrote The Informant and the upcoming Contagion for the director – negotiating to take a fresh pass at the screenplay. If all goes well, Soderbergh should start work on the film about a year from now, assuming he doesn’t load five other projects on to his plate before then.

Just so you know, whilst we may receive a commission or other compensation from the links on this website, we never allow this to influence product selections - read why you should trust us