Classic pulp hero The Green Hornet will receive a new movie adaptation from Paramount Pictures by The Accountant director Gavin O'Connor. O'Connor plans for a more serious, edgy take on the character than previous adaptations have presented.
“I’ve been wanting to make this movie - and create this franchise - since I’ve wanted to make movies,” O’Connor told Deadline. “As a kid, when most of my friends were into Superman and Batman, there was only one superhero who held my interest - The Green Hornet. I always thought he was the baddest badass because he had no superpowers. The Green Hornet was a human superhero. And he didn’t wear a clown costume. And he was a criminal - in the eyes of the law - and in the eyes of the criminal world. So all this felt real to me. Imagine climbing to the top of the Himalayas, or Mount Everest, or K2 over and over again and no one ever knew? You can never tell anybody. That’s the life of Britt and Kato. What they do, they can never say. They don’t take credit for anything.”
Previous adaptations of The Green Hornet include a somewhat campy TV series from the 60s that was contemporary with the Adam West Batman TV show, and a comedy focused take from director Michael Gondry starring Seth Rogen, released in 2011.
“For almost 20 years now I’ve been tracking the rights, watching from the sidelines as they were optioned by one studio or another,” O'Connor explained. “When I discovered the rights were available again, I tracked them down, partnered with Peter Chernin and we set the movie up at Paramount. With the rights now in our loving hands, I’m beyond excited to bring The Green Hornet into the 21st century in a meaningful and relevant way; modernizing it and making it accessible to a whole new generation. My intention is to bring a gravitas to The Green Hornet that wipes away the camp and kitsch of the previous iteration. I want to re-mythologize The Green Hornet in a contemporary context, with an emphasis on story and character, while at the same time, incorporating themes that speak to my heart. The comic book movie is the genre of our time. How do we look at it differently? How do we create a distinctive film experience that tells itself differently than other comic book movies? How do we land comfortably at the divide between art and industry? How do we go deeper, prompt more emotion? How do we put a beating heart into the character that was never done before? These are my concerns…these are my desires, my intentions, my fears, my goals.”
O'Connor will work alongside screenwriter Sean O'Keefe, who will pen the script. The pair have a tone and a direction in mind.
“Britt’s shadow war background makes him a natural at undercover work. This is connected to his military backstory, which is more CIA Special Activities Division than SEAL Team 6. He’s cross-trained in intelligence work and kinetic operations. A hunter at the top of the Special Operations food chain, working so far outside the system he had to think twice to remember his real name," said O'Connor. "We will put a vigilante engine under the hood of his character."
No actors are attached to The Green Hornet reboot, and no projected release date has been announced.