The long-gestating movie based on the DC Comics superhero Plastic Man is back on track with a new writer with plans to gender-swap the character for the big screen adaptation. Previously, Amanda Idoko (The Mayor) had been tapped to write the screenplay for the movie, which was intended to be a comedic action-adventure. The Hollywood Reporter now reports that Black List writer Cat Vesko has signed on to pen a new screenplay for the movie, noting that the project will now be a “female-led vehicle.”
The change in writers is intended to “take the project in a new direction entirely.” No additional details about the plot have been revealed, so it’s yet not clear if the movie will be retitled as Plastic Woman or something along those lines. It’s also unknown if the story will change the gender of the original Plastic Man’s secret identity, Patrick “Eel” O’Brian, or introduce an entirely different version of the superhero with similar abilities.
Plastic Man was created by Jack Cole and first appeared in Quality Comics’ Police Comics No. 1. The character was later acquired by DC Comics, eventually crossing over with other DC titles and even joining the Justice League. Originally a burglar, Eel O’Brian was shot and doused with toxic chemicals during a botched robbery, giving him the ability to stretch or mold his body into any shape. He decides to leave the criminal life behind and use his powers for good, later joining the police force and even the FBI to assist in criminal investigations.
The Plastic Man character has appeared in multiple other mediums, stretching outside of the comic book realm to appear in a variety of video games and animated projects. After appearing in the classic Super Friends cartoon, he starred in the animated spinoff series The Plastic Man Comedy/Adventure Show. SpongeBob voice actor Tom Kenny also voiced Plastic Man in a pilot episode for an animated series that never made it to air. The stretchy superhero finally made it to the big screen in 2018’s Teen Titans Go! To the Movies, voiced by Joey Cappabianca.
To date, a live-action iteration of Plastic Man still has not been made, but it hasn’t been for a lack of trying. In the early 90s, Warner Bros. sought to make a movie based on the character with Bryan Spicer directing, but the project fell apart. The Wachowskis also wrote a Plastic Man screenplay that wound up dying in development hell. Rumblings of a new movie began to make the rounds again in 2018 when Amanda Idoko stepped in to write a new script, only for this planned version to similarly stall.
As the Plastic Man adaptation is still in the early stages of development with its new writer, there’s not yet any word about when the movie could begin filming. Unlike the prior attempts to get the movie made, time will tell if this version will be the one that ultimately gets made. This news comes to us from The Hollywood Reporter.