Lionsgate Acquires Potential Fanny-Whooping Franchise With Kick-Ass
Kick-Ass, Layer Cake director Matthew Vaughn's indie adaptation of Mark Millar's comic series and a Comic-Con surprise sensation, has found a domestic distributor in Lionsgate. In a deal Variety described as "big," the studio has committed to "a wide 2010 release." The story follows New York City high school student named Dave Lizewski (Aaron Johnson, a young British actor poised for It-Boydom, having also starred opposite Carey Mulligan in The Greatest and next playing a young John Lennon in Nowhere Boy) who dons a green hooded costume -- yes, another green superhero -- and sets about a secret life of fighting crime, only to have the shit pummeled out of him repeatedly and find himself dubbed "Kick-Ass" by his legions of YouTube admirers.
He later teams up with other self-styled kid heroes, including the 11-year-old Hit Girl, trained by her ex-cop dad (Nicolas Cage) to take Kevlar-deflected bullets to the gut; she's played by The Amityville Horror's Chloë Moretz, in a role that should inspire a generation of girls bred to worship the Jonases to instead aspire to become the ultimate ruthless killing machines. Full of Vaughn's eye-grabbing visual flourishes and the potent proposition of kids inflicting brutal cartoon violence upon adults -- who undoubtedly had it coming -- look for Kick-Ass to do that very thing for the studio, which at long last has a potential fanny-whooping franchise that doesn't involve grandmas-with-dicks or murderous marionettes on tricycles. It should be interesting to see what Lionsgate's endlessly inventive marketing head Tim Palen cooks up for the property.
· Lionsgate grabs 'Kick-Ass' [Variety]