Acclaimed Filmmaker Kevin Smith Stung By The Green Hornet

Miramax Films Taps Smith to Write and Direct Action-Adventure Feature

Feb 18, 2004, 00:00 ET from Miramax Films

    NEW YORK, Feb. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Gearing up for one of its most ambitious
 film franchises to date, Miramax Films co-chairman Harvey Weinstein announced
 today that renowned filmmaker and comic book author, collector and self
 described "comic fan-boy" Kevin Smith will write and direct the film version
 of the classic action-adventure persona, The Green Hornet.  The film
 represents Miramax's expansion of its development and production slate to
 include motion pictures that can compete in the "tent pole" marketplace.
 George Trendle, the son of Green Hornet creator George Trendle, will executive
 produce the film along with Harold Berkowitz.
     Smith is keeping the plot a closely guarded secret, and will only go as
 far to say that it would remain very true to Trendle's characters with a few
 new twists.
     "Kevin's tremendous work on our upcoming Jersey Girl, has demonstrated his
 continued growth as a filmmaker and we have no doubt that he will tackle this
 franchise for us in a compelling and entertaining way.  In addition to being a
 great writer and director, Kevin knows more about comic characters, books and
 the creative process than anyone else I have ever met," said Weinstein.  "The
 character of The Green Hornet offers a myriad of possible film ideas and
 numerous merchandise and branded integration opportunities with our corporate
 partners, giving us a platform for a very viable and long standing franchise."
     "Long-time comics geek gets to make comic book movie?  This is a dream
 come true.  I'm still reeling!  You don't know how in love with Harvey
 Weinstein I am right now.  I couldn't have asked for a better vote of
 confidence in me as a filmmaker than being afforded the opportunity with
 'Hornet' to push beyond the boundaries of what I've done in film thus far,"
 said Smith.  Adding, "And making this movie with Miramax means that not only
 will we deliver an exciting, chop-socky-filled action flick, but it's gonna
 have a compelling story, believable characters, and great dialogue to boot!
 Let's roll, Kato!"
     Beginning with his seminal film Clerks, Smith has woven comic book
 references and iconology into the dialogue and characters in many of his
 films.  In 1997's Chasing Amy, Smith's two main characters, who are comic-book
 writers/artists, create a comic duo known as Bluntman and Chronic; a duo which
 also appears in Smith's 2001 film Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.  In his
 sophomore film Mallrats, Smith also featured comic-book legend Stan Lee in a
 supporting role.
     Smith is well known for writing award-winning, best-selling runs of
 "Daredevil" for Marvel Comics and "Green Arrow" for DC Comics, as well as
 comics based on his films Clerks and Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back.  Smith is
 also credited with rekindling the mainstream public's interest in comics
 through his 1998 Daredevil comic book story arc, entitled Guardian Devil.
     Serving as Hollywood's comic-book connoisseur, Smith is no stranger to The
 Green Hornet.  In 1993 Smith sold his comic book collection to help finance
 the $27,000 budget of his 1994 debut film, "Clerks;" a collection which
 included several 'Green Hornet' titles.
     Smith is the proud owner of his own comic book store, Jay and Silent Bob's
 Secret Stash, which opened in 1997 in Red Bank, NJ and is scheduled to open a
 west coast branch in Westwood this May.
     Jon Gordon, executive vice president of production, and Hannah Minghella,
 creative executive, will oversee the project on behalf of Miramax.
     Charles Layton, executive vice president, office of the co-chairman, and
 Steve Hutensky, executive vice president of business affairs, negotiated on
 behalf of Miramax. Attorney John Sloss and the Endeavor Agency represented
     Miramax and Smith's most recent collaboration Jersey Girl, starring Ben
 Affleck and Liv Tyler, will open in theaters nationwide in March, 2004.

SOURCE Miramax Films