Like Sherlock Holmes and Peter Pan, the saga of Robin Hood is public domain, and there are few things Hollywood loves more than an IP with no true owner. Anybody can tell the story of Nottingham’s most famous outlaw; most recently, Robin Hood was seen onscreen in Ridley Scott’s tepidly received 2010 update with Russell Crowe. Now, even as the in-production Robin Hood: Origins looks ahead to its 2018 release and three other studios mull over similar projects, there’s yet another reboot of the English legend on its way.
Unlike past interpretations, this version of the story won’t really be about Robin Hood, per se. Instead, Deadline reports Sony has picked up Pete Barry’s script for Marian, which recasts Hood’s famed paramour Lady Marian as the action-oriented heroine of the story. Margot Robbie is set to star in the title role, with the actress’ LuckyChap Entertainment attached to produce.
A synopsis for the film reads, “After a conspiracy to conquer England in which the love of her life Robin Hood dies before her eyes, Marian picks up the cause to lead her people into a pivotal war. She comes to power, charging into a battle that will not only decide the fate of the kingdom but will see her don the mantle of the man she loved. In the process, she rises as a legend herself.”
Setting aside the fact that there will be two more Robin Hood adaptations (most likely) released within a year or so of each other, Marian seems to at least offer a fresh take on the material, with one of Hollywood’s more bankable stars of the moment in Robbie. (And it can’t be said enough: the more female-fronted action movies we get, the sooner we can leave all that Ghostbusters-type whining behind as a culture.) There’s still no director attached, putting Marian at the very beginning of the production cycle, but it’ll be a project to watch. It also marks yet another franchise bid for Sony, who’s been struggling to establish a new one for a good while now that it shares its stake in Spider-Man and no longer controls James Bond.
Also, we believe a retitle to Robbie Hood is in order. C’mon. It’s sitting right there.