Just yesterday, The Hollywood Reporter announced that super-agency CAA had signed Weekly World News to its impressive roster of clients. The theory was that the now-defunct fake tabloid publication has a bevy of untapped properties, of which poster boy "Bat Boy" is just one… and that its characters could "give Marvel a run for its money." That remains to be seen.
But will Hollywood greet Weekly World News‘s freak show with a hearty handshake (artist’s rendering above)? Or will WWN be booted out of Tinseltown’s glitzy gate faster than you can say "We’re stripping Bat Boy of his co-EP credit…"?
So, WWN, we’re going to do you a favor. Here are our suggestions for spinning the raw materials you already have into box office GOLD!
WWN Property: Bigfoot
Movie Title: BigLEADFoot
Logline: Based on the Weekly World News article about Bigfoot stealing a race car, the feature follows the mythical missing link as he rises through the ranks of the NASCAR circuit, winning the hearts of America while constantly combatting his arch nemesis, a driver sponsored by an evil logging conglomerate.
Tagline: He’s driving NASCAR up a tree!
WWN Property: Merfolk: Weekly World News published several stories about the existence of merfolk, a race of half-human/half-fish, sociable and extremely intelligent beings.
Movie Title: Sploosh!
Logline: Fallon Lauer is rescued from drowning as a young boy off Cape Cod by a young mermaid. Years later he returns to the same location, and once again manages to fall into the sea, and is rescued once more by the mermaid (Allen isn’t sure what he’s seen and what he’s imagined). The mermaid decides to search for Allen in New York, sprouting legs when her tail dries. On finding Allen, they fall in love, but she has a secret, which will no longer be a secret if she gets her legs wet..
Tagline: Fallon Lauer Thought He’d Never Find The Right Woman… He Was Only Half Wrong!
WWN Property: "A Scientist": In the pages of Weekly World News, "A Scientist", is typically shown and quoted. He was known as "A Scientist", to distinguish him from A Baffled Scientist. His findings are as close as WWN gets to having a reliable source.
Movie Title: …A Scientist
Logline: Russell Crowe stars as Dr. Scientist, whose PhD in Knowledge has made him a source for all matters scientific. When his willingness to corroborate any and all scientific findings betrays him during "The most important experiment ever," he must fight to retain his credibility and name, lest he be outed by the throne-stealing Baffled Scientist.
Tagline: You can quote him on that.
WWN Property: Heartbroken Saddam Hussein: In 2003, before the capture of Saddam Hussein and persisting after his capture, WWN ran a series of articles on an alleged romance between him and Osama bin Laden.
Movie Title: Touch Your Mustache to My Beard
Logline: A period piece set before Saddam’s capture, the story follows the steamy, sensual affair, before a wedding was performed, with Hussein as the bride and bin Laden as the groom. Later, they traveled the globe, ending up in France. They adopted a shaved ape baby (Robert) that posed as a human child. After an argument, Hussein left for Iraq to be comforted in his home town of Tikrit by family and friends, and hid in the spider hole until Bat Boy discovered him.
Tagline: Saddam’s been in Laden…
WWN Property: ALIVE!: One of the other many recurring subjects in Weekly World News was the occasional "ALIVE!" cover story. Most often the story pertained to some sort of human or creature, such as a mummy, prehistoric creature and occasionally a human who had been frozen in a block of ice.
Movie Title: Flaming Star II: The Reckoning
Logline: A space epode set in the year 3030, in which the body of Elvis is found to actually be cryogenically frozen on a distant planet. He is awakened by a team of Space Marines, who discover that Elvis is actually the universe’s most letha fighting machine, whose skills can be used to defend a dying alien race from a parasitic, planet-devouring biotechnological species.
Tagline: This Christmas… The King of Cool gets defrosted.
WWN Property: Bat Boy is the unofficial mascot of WWN. Their Mickey Mouse or Spider-Man, if you will. Found in a West Virginia cave, Bat Boy is a mutated half-boy, half-bat with a proclivity for stealing cars and biting people. He’s in desperate need of some good PR and Hollywood is the answer.
Movie Title: Bat Boys
Logline: To atone for a morally-corrupt youth, Bat Boy has gone South for the winter to join the Miami-Dade Police Department. There he partners up with Detective Mike Lowrey to keep the streets drug free. Using his connections in the Chiroptera world, Bat Boy discovers that a large volume of heroin cut with bat excrement is being pushed on the streets of Miami. When Bat Boy’s sister is kidnapped by the guano pushers, he and Lowrey travel to Austin, TX for a final showdown.
Tagline: Sh*t is about to get unreal.
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