Jamie Foxx to Spawn in film adaptation of Todd McFarlane's comics

The actor will play an unlucky Black Ops agent who ends up becoming a Hellspawn warrior.

Anti-hero Spawn gets a new movie from Todd McFarlane starring Jamie Foxx, but will the comics' non-verbal character speak on the silver screen?
Image Comics

Superheroes with tragic origin stories are common, but not many superheroes have been double-crossed by both the CIA and Hell.

Spawn, a character made famous in the '90s Image Comics comic books by Todd McFarlane, has had an unlucky life, but fortunately the character will finally make it to the big screen, with Jamie Foxx reportedly in the lead role.

The movie will follow CIA operative Al Newman as other Black Ops agents betray him and leave him to die. He wakes up in Hell, where he's offered a second chance to return to the real world.

The catch: his soul enters a Hellspawn warrior, transforming him into the anti-hero Spawn.

Foxx has wanted to portray Spawn since 2013, when he played the character Electro in The Amazing Spider-Man 2.

"A few years back I flew out to Arizona to meet the man behind one of the most incredible comic book characters in the universe, Todd McFarlane," Foxx told Deadline on Tuesday.

"He was taken aback when I told him with the enthusiasm of a young child that more than anything I wanted to put my name in the hat to embody his beloved character Spawn. I told him no one would work harder than me if given the opportunity, well the opportunity is here! I'm humbled and ready to transform."

While Foxx is known for his award-winning performances in movies such as Collateral, Ray, Dreamgirls, Django Unchained and Baby Driver, he may have to show off a different kind of acting chops for the role of Spawn, since this character doesn't speak.

"The scariest movies, from Jaws to John Carpenter's The Thing, or The Grudge and The Ring, the boogeyman doesn't talk," McFarlane told Deadline.

McFarlane will be making his directorial debut for the upcoming film and wants to treat the movie as the beginning of a trilogy. But don't expect an entire film explaining the origins of Spawn.

"I'm not inclined in this first movie to do an origin story," McFarlane told Deadline. "I'm mentally exhausted from origin stories."

This isn't the first time Spawn fans have seen the comic book character in different incarnations. Spawn was both an animated film and a 1997 live-action film starring actor Michael Jai White.

The new Spawn film will be produced by Blumhouse Productions. No date has been set for the film's theatrical release.

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