Matthew Vaughn (X-Men: First Class), the man behind this year’s spy action sleeper hit Kingsman: The Secret Service is set to direct I Am Pilgrim, an adaptation of Terry Hayes’ espionage mega best-seller. Kingsman has taken in over 400 million at the global box office since its February release and MGM is hopeful that this new project can accomplish something similar.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Vaughn will helm as well as co-produce I Am Pilgrim for MGM in what may be the first of a franchise. Novelist and screenwriter Hayes (Payback, Mad Max 2: Road Warrior, Dead Calm), who adapted his own book for the big screen, is currently writing a novelized Pilgrim sequel. Lloyd Braun is also producing through Whalerock Industries with Andrew Mittman as executive producer.
In the story, Pilgrim is a code name for a man who does not exist. He is the adopted son of a wealthy family and former head of a secret espionage unit for U.S. intelligence, and has since disappeared into anonymous retirement. He is tracked down by an NYPD detective and called back into action following a gruesome murder that mimics events in his book on forensic criminal investigation. Pilgrim’s international investigation turns into a terrifying race against time to save the country from annihilation.
Jonathan Glickman, MGM’s President of the Motion Picture Group said in a statement,
We could not be more excited to have a consummate filmmaker like Matthew to bring I Am Pilgrim to the screen. His sensibility, coupled with Terry Hayes’ incredible story, gives us the ideal team to bring this character to the world wide audience.
Continuing in the spy genre, Vaughn is following up his Kingsman: The Secret Service with a sequel for 20th Century Fox next year, which he is on board to write and direct. His own MARV Films produced and co-financed the first Kingsman and will also be backing Kingsman 2.
Production on I Am Pilgrim is scheduled to begin in 2016. It is not yet clear which spy project will come first for Vaughn – Pilgrim or Kingsman 2.