‘The Gray Area’: ‘X-Men: First Class’ Screenwriter Ashley Edward Miller and Legion M Working on Adaptation!!

At this year’s New York Comic-Con, the first-ever fan-owned entertainment company Legion M held a panel to discuss the power of fandom, and all the ways that audiences can own their very own piece of each of the company’s projects. During the panel on Sunday, the company made the first official announcement that Thor and X-Men: First Class screenwriter Ashley Edward Miller has boarded their project to adapt the graphic novel The Gray Area into a feature film.

The news broke on Sunday that Legion M production company intends to adapt comics illustrator John Romita Jr. and Glen Brunswick‘s comics and graphic novel The Gray Area into a film franchise, with Miller officially attached to pen the screenplay. Written by Brunswick, the 2004 comic series is a collaboration between the artist and writer that chronicles the journey of corrupt cop and womanizer Rudy Chance who finds himself in a “gray area” between Heaven and Hell following his death. Given a second chance to redeem himself, Chance finds he now has extraordinary powers to fight evil in the afterlife, but his own dark side threatens to eternally damn his soul. Described as “John Wick meets Constantine meets Goodfellas,” we’d like to pitch the idea for Keanu Reeves to play Chance.

Miller‘s work with co-writer Zack Stentz is credited to rebooting full franchises with X-Men: First Class, and setting the foundation for Thor‘s place within the MCU‘s Phase 1 in 2011’s Thor. The writer and producer is also known for his work on the series Andromeda, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles starring Lena Headey, and Fringe. Most recently, Miller is serving as writer and executive producer for Netflix‘s animated series Dota: Dragon’s Blood, a show now on its third season and based off the popular online multiplayer game Dota 2. On joining The Gray Area, Miller says that Romita Jr. and Brunswick‘s comic series “was so impressive in its storytelling that I couldn’t put it down or stop thinking about the possibilities of where it could go. Having the chance to expand on their series and put this story on screen is truly an honor.” The screenwriter also praised the duo’s lasting impression and influence on “writers everywhere.”

The Vice President of Development at Legion M, David Baxter spoke on the company’s joy to team-up with Miller, saying:

“Working with somebody of Ashley’s stature to bring this beloved series to the next level has got us and our community extremely excited. We’ve been the biggest fans of John and Glen’s work for as long as we can remember. Announcing the news alongside John at New York Comic Con and seeing the buzz it’s creating is really fun and we can’t wait to see where Ashley takes this.”

The Gray Area marks Romita Jr.‘s second project to make the leap from page to screen after the Kick-Ass franchise starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Chloë Grace Moretz. The comic artist’s career has spanned over 50 years, having been one of the initial Spider-Man illustrators since the 1960s. He’s worked on numerous Marvel installations including Neil Gaiman‘s Eternals, Wolverine, Black Panther and was also a creator of many renowned characters including Madame Web, whose getting their own 2024 feature film.

David Uslan will produce The Gray Area feature film, along with Legion M executives Terri Lubaroff, David Baxter, Jeff Annison and Paul Scanlan. If interested, you can check out the impressive artwork for the graphic novel on Legion M’s website. You can also learn more about The Gray Man and read the official synopsis below:

“The Gray Area” takes place after the execution of Rudy Chance for double-crossing a drug cartel. As a brutal, corrupt cop and womanizer, he expects he’ll wind up in Hell. Instead, he finds himself in the Gray Area. Here, he is forced to combat evil for an afterlife police force in order to gain a shot at redemption. Given extraordinary powers, Chance hunts down the wicked to condemn and the worthy to heal. But can he control his own dark side or will it lead him to eternal damnation?


via Collider

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