MGM Relaunching The Incredible Shrinking Man

While there have been a lot of really cool and original science fiction movies in the past few years, sometimes you just can’t beat the classics and one of those is Richard Matheson’s 1956 novel The Shrinking Man, about a man exposed to radiation who shrinks to the size of an insect.

A year after it was published, Matheson adapted his own novel to the screen as The Incredible Shrinking Man and one or both of those probably had a huge influence on Stan Lee when he created the Marvel character Ant-Man, which is currently in development by Edgar Wright and Marvel Studios for a film set for release on November 6, 2015.

Now word comes from The Hollywood Reporter‘s “Heat Vision” that MGM has just picked up the movie rights to Matheson’s novel with the soon-to-be 87-year-old author co-producing and co-writing the screenplay adaptation of his own work with his son Richard Matheson Jr. Their plans are to keep the tone of the story but to modernize it incorporating advancements in nanotechnology.

As fans of science fiction will already know, Matheson is responsible for many original horror and fantasy stories that directly influenced the likes of Will Smith’s I Am Legend, Hugh Jackman’s Reel Steel and Steven Spielberg’s early film Duel.

At one point many years ago, Universal Pictures was trying to make a new comedy version of The Incredible Shrinking Man with director Brett Ratner and Eddie Murphy, but that project seems to be long dead as Universal lost the rights to Matheson’s novel last summer.

Speaking from what appears to be a press release, Matheson calls the remake “an existential action movie” adding, “My original story was a metaphor for how man’s place in the world was diminishing. That still holds today, where all these advancements that are going to save us will be our undoing.”

MGM President Jonathan Glickman added: “The themes of The Shrinking Man continue to be relevant and the Mathesons’ cutting-edge ideas for the adaptation will make for a great film that will play all over the world.”

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