Max Landis’s Chronicle is picked up by FOX

The low-budget movie Chronicle has drawn a ton of comparisons in the last 24 hours with highly successful documentary-style movies. The Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield, Paranormal Activity and District 9 have all been namechecked in connection with this film, putting it in good company.

If Chronicle can match the commercial and critical success of those movies, I’m sure the makers will be just thrilled.

The technical details? Well, the script was submitted by Max Landis (son of John Landis). Twentieth Century Fox have picked up the movie and it will be directed by Josh Trank in his first directorial role. An unofficial movie synopsis has been given by Variety, who describe the basic plot as follows:

Sparking interest with its originality, “Chronicle” is a docu-style account of three Portland teens who become exposed to a mysterious substance in the woods and, as a result, develop incredible powers. The teenagers hone their skills for fun, until personal and family problems turn them against one another.

It actually sounds like an interesting concept. We’ve seen the superhero thing done to death, but what we have here is an origin story for how these kids get their powers, and the tale of how they turn against each other. I don’t think this format will lend itself to secret island bases for megalomaniac supervillains, so I expect it to be a more realistic plot!

I remember reading a discussion about the death of the superhero movie recently, where the big-budget Marvel and DC names cost a fortune to produce in terms of big names and licensing that they’re likely to die out. Even though names like X Men, Spider-Man and Green Lantern are likely to draw an audience of established fans, is it more likely that we’ll see more of these low-budget films establishing a new generation of superheroes that don’t owe fealty to Marvel or DC?

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