Warner Bros.’ Wonder Woman obliterated the long-held misbelief that female-led hero films couldn’t work, that they wouldn’t make money and boys didn’t want to see them. With that myopic notion now gone, there is a race among studios to capitalize on the market that drove Wonder Woman to such success. Millennium Films is aiming to enjoy that kind of success with its Red Sonja reboot. We heard a few weeks back that X-Men director Bryan Singer was being eyed to direct the pic, and it was said that Millennium would pay him top dollar for the project. Now we have an idea of just how much that is: a whopping $10 million.
As reported by THR, Bryan Singer is negotiating a fee of up to $10 million for the Millennium Films remake. This is a stunning figure and shows how serious Millennium is about the Red Sonja reboot and its desire for this film to launch its own superhero franchise. Clearly Millennium Films thinks that Bryan Singer is the right man to direct the story about the powerful female warrior and set this franchise off on the right foot so that it will pay dividends for the production company in the future. Of course, Bryan Singer is not unproven in this regard. The director of The Usual Suspects directed 2000’s X-Men, which ushered in the comic book movie age and launched a series that is still going and has grossed billions at the box office.
Bryan Singer’s eight-digit payday for Red Sonja is remarkable in its own right, but it is especially notable in light of the director’s recent troubles. Allegations of sexual misconduct have dogged Bryan Singer for years, but the recent #MeToo movement has seen him once again come under accusation. In December, Bryan Singer was sued for an alleged rape that allegedly took place in 2003, when the accuser was 17. The director has categorically denied the allegations. Given this controversy, it is somewhat surprising that Bryan Singer is still commanding such a fee. He probably wasn’t very in demand, as many studios are extremely risk-averse to talent with baggage attached to them right now, and directors have lost jobs for mere tweets.
Those allegations aren’t the only issues Bryan Singer has had of late either. The director was fired from the upcoming Queen film Bohemian Rhapsody after being absent from the set for what he said was a family health emergency. The film was almost finished, so he will still be credited as director, but you might think this could raise some red flags. Apparently not though, and Millennium Pictures is willing to take the chance on the director and hoping that the experience and talent Bryan Singer brings to the table will make the $10 million spent on his services look like a smart investment when Red Sonja hits theaters.
Regardless of who is behind the camera, a Red Sonja reboot seems like a smart idea. The character was originally part of the Marvel Comics Conan the Barbarian series before she got her own movie starring Brigitte Nielsen in 1985. The character has some name recognition and this is an opportunity to put a badass female warrior in a different setting than the traditional superhero films, spy movies or YA adaptations that we are used to seeing.
Stay tuned to CinemaBlend and we’ll keep you updated on Red Sonja as it develops. To see all of the biggest movies you can look forward to this fall, check out our release schedule.