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'Iron Man 3' Director Refocuses on 'Doc Savage'

Sony Pictures closes deal for film based on the classic pulp hero.

Doc Savage Cover Shane Black Inset - P 2013
Shane Black

Doc Savage is back on the docket for Shane Black.

Sony Pictures says it's closed its deal with Black to co-write and direct the film based on the classic pulp hero.

Black began work on a screenplay in 2009, and decided to make it his directing vehicle in 2010 when the opportunity to direct Iron Man 3 came along.

Now with that movie out of the way, and on its way to earning $1 billion in global box office, Black is renewing his commitment to one of his favorite heroes.

Black co-wrote the screenplay with Anthony Bagarozzi and Charles Mondry. Neal H. Moritz is producing the project with Ori Marmur through his Original Film banner. Michael Usland will also serve as a producer on the film.

Sony is prepping to go all out with Savage and make it its next big franchise.

"We couldn't be more excited to be building a franchise from the ground up with Shane and this team,” said Sony’s president of production Hannah Minghella in a statement. “Shane and Neal have a fantastic understanding of the character and a great take on the material and we can't wait to get this production up and running.”

Known as the Man in Bronze, Savage was a popular fixture on radio and magazines in the 1930s and 1940s. Savage had almost limitless skills – he was a surgeon, scientist, inventor – and possessed super-strength, was a master of disguise and more. He surrounded himself with a group of helpers and, from his office in the Empire State Building, fought villains bent on world domination.

Black is a huge fan of the pulp stories and has the original Savage books lining his book cases.

The character was translated into a Warner Bros. movie in 1975 produced by George Pal and starred Ron Ely.