Producer John Davis Talks THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E; Will It Be Soderbergh’s Last Film and Shoot Next Year?

     June 7, 2011


Steve recently conducted a long interview with producer John Davis.  Due to the length of the interview, Steve has broken it up into several parts.  Yesterday, we ran what Davis had to say about the Predator franchise.  Today, we have what Davis had to say about Steven Soderbergh’s planned adaptation of the 1960s spy series The Man from U.N.C.L.E. According to Davis, Soderbergh says it will be his last film before he retires.  The hope is to start shooting it sometime early next year.  And while George Clooney has been rumored to star, Davis only offered a non-committal, “That would be the best way to do it.”

Hit the jump for full quotes from Davis including what he found appealing about the TV series.

man_from_uncle_tv_show_image_01For those unfamiliar with the show, here’s a brief synopsis via Wikipedia:

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. is an American television series that was broadcast on NBC from September 22, 1964, to January 15, 1968. It follows the exploits of two secret agents, played by Robert Vaughn and David McCallum, who work for a fictitious secret international espionage and law-enforcement agency called U.N.C.L.E., whose letters stand for the United Network Command for Law and Enforcement.

U.N.C.L.E.’s archenemy was a vast organization known as THRUSH (originally named WASP in the series pilot movie).  THRUSH’s aim was to conquer the world. Napoleon Solo said, in “The Green Opal Affair,” “THRUSH believes in the two-party system: the masters and the slaves,”, adding in another episode (“The Vulcan Affair”) that THRUSH will “kill people the way people kill flies: a careless flick of the wrist–reflex action.” So dangerous was the threat from THRUSH that governments, even those most ideologically opposed such as the United States and the USSR, cooperated in the formation and operation of U.N.C.L.E. Similarly, if Solo and Kuryakin held opposing political views, the writers allowed little to show in their interactions.

John_Davis_ProducerIf you don’t mind, what is going on with The Man from U.N.C.L.E.?

JOHN DAVIS:  Hopefully.  Knock on wood.  Steven Soderbergh said that it will be his last movie.  It will hopefully start shooting sometime early next year.

He has been talking about retirement a lot.

DAVIS:  Yes.  When I grew up as a kid, The Man from U.N.C.L.E. were the coolest guys with the greatest kind of weapons.  It was kind of an international C.I.A.  It was a great Russian agent and a great C.I.A. agent from America and all of that stuff.  It was this kind of secret international force that worked together to keep the world safe.  So it was kind of the United Nations of C.I.A. agents, K.G.B. agents, and all of that stuff.  It was just the coolest TV series and I loved it.  That is one of those…I said that sometimes it is 9 months and sometimes it is 9 years.  This has been 10 or 11 years.  It kind of feels like it is coming together.

If I am not wrong, George Clooney has been attached to that project for awhile.

DAVIS:  That would be the best way to do it.

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