Warners forges 'Metal Men'


Mining for new projects, Warner Bros. Pictures is hoping to strike gold with the robotic superhero team "Metal Men," setting up the project with producer Lauren Shuler Donner. Eric Champnella has been brought on board to write.

Based on a DC Comics hero created by Robert Kanigher and Ross Andru in 1962, "Metal" revolves around a brilliant scientist, William Magnus, and his creations: six highly advanced robots who have powers associated with their respective metals -- gold, iron, lead, tin, mercury and platinum. Instead of having to be programd, the Metal Men can think for themselves, which is both their genius and their biggest flaw.

The heroes made their first appearance in "Showcase," where they were created as filler but proved to be unexpectedly popular and received their own title. The heroes served as a dysfunctional family, and the stories balanced sentimentality, humor and action.

Jack Leslie of the Donners' Co. also is producing.

Geoff Johns, who was an assistant to Richard Donner before becoming one of the comic world's renowned writers, helped develop the take and will executive produce.

Dan Lin and Elishia Holmes are shepherding for Warners. Gregory Noveck is overseeing for DC Comics.

Shuler Donner has a history of bringing comic books to the silver screen. She was behind the "X-Men"  movies at Fox, which were based on the Marvel Comics superheroes, and 2005's "Constantine"  at Warners, based on a DC Comics/Vertigo title.

Champnella wrote "Mr. 3000" and most recently "Say Uncle" for Warners. He is repped by ICM, Mosaic and attorney Dave Feldman.