Will Smith to star in adaptation of Marcus Sakey’s novel Brilliance
According to Deadline, Will Smith has signed up for Paramount Pictures’ adaptation of Marcus Sakey’s novel Brilliance. The film reunites Smith with Oscar-winning writer Avika Goldsman, who worked with the actor on I Am Legend and I, Robot.
The Brilliance trilogy is set in a future world where “brilliants” — the rare 1% born gifted with superior mental abilities — are carefully tracked by the government. Federal agent Nick Cooper, himself a “brilliant,’ is tasked with using his own gifts to infiltrate a radical group and hunt down another ‘brilliant’ who could plunge the entire country into a devastating civil war. But to catch him, Cooper will have to violate everything he believes in — and betray his own kind.
Smith has long been attached to the project and actually stepped away from it back in 2014 — and was almost replaced by Jared Leto. Whatever reservations the actor had about the project obviously subsided.
The article doesn’t specify whether Goldsman will pursue his original plans to adapt the series into a trilogy, as reported last year.
Goldsman will also be producing the project alongside Shane Salerno and The Story Factory. The producers are planning to shop the book series. Sakey’s trilogy has sold two million copies worldwide, and the books were originally sold to Legendary with Will Smith set to potentially star. The author regained the rights and wrote two sequels, A Better World and Written in Fire, before Goldsman and The Story Factory signed onto the potential movie franchise.
Smith was last seen in the Disney blockbuster Aladdin, and will next be seen in And Lee’s Gemini Man and the sequel Bad Boys for Life.