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With Michael Bay putting the finishing touches on his Pain and Gain, the first non-Transformers movie he has made in years, he has had to hand off the aerial action movie Heatseekers. So while Bay will continue to produce the upcoming movie, Timur Bekmambetov plans to slide into the director’s chair and guide the blockbuster to theaters.
THR reports that the Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter director has recruited F. Scott Frazer (Line of Sight) to polish a screenplay about an ex-military pilot who has to face off against a group of pirates in the sky. The initial treatment was submitted by George Mahaffey. Further details on the storyline are scarce, though the trade says that the picture has been set up at Paramount, with Bay co-producing alongside Chris Morgan, Andrew Form and Brad Fuller.
For a time, Bekmambetov was contemplating a sequel to his English-language debut Wanted, though that picture seems to have stalled now that Angelina Jolie has been written out of the story at her own request. His shining star has cooled a tad after Vampire Hunter only earned $37.5M in the States. However, Paramount’s willing to give the director a shot at this title because the horror-history mash-up managed to cross the $100M mark thanks to overseas box office.
Aerial sequences can save a movie. I even enjoyed Red Tails, because Anthony Hemingway did a bang-up job on the flights scenes – even if he dropped the ball on some of the character development. Bekmambetov’s a visual director, and he could do a lot with an aerial adventure. We’ll bring you more details as they develop.