Comic Legends: Did the Sable TV Show Block a Pierce Brosnan Sable Movie?

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The Jon Sable TV series squelched plans for a Sable film starring Pierce Brosnan.



One of the top independent comic books of the early 1980s was Mike Grell's Jon Sable, Freelance...

As Grell himself put it, the hook of the comic book is that it was the reverse Batman. Sable was this bad ass mercenary in his main identity, but he then had a fake identity that he used to write best-selling children's books about leprechauns living in Central Park.

In the 1970s, Gene Simmons and KISS burst on to the scene (here is Gene with Brooke Shields at a party in the late 1970s)...

In the 1980s, Simmons was beginning to get some serious acting roles, like as the villain in the Michael Crichton film, Runaway, in 1984...

So Simmons was clearly getting more and more involved in the film industry during this period, so when Simmons says in an interview, "Quite a few years ago, I optioned the rights to comic book JOHN SABLE Created by Mike Grell.

He then set up at intermedia, a movie production studio. And then I got PREDATOR Writer, Stephen DeSouza to write the script. We were approaching Pierce Brosnan to be the lead.

And then intermedia went out of business.

I never lost hope, and then John Sable was set up as a television series on ABC.”

The Sable TV series was sadly a short-lived affair, and the big problem with the show is that they just went full-on Batman with the character.

So the timing certainly SEEMS to work out, right?

Brosnan was doing Remington Steele at the time and he would have made an excellent Jon Sable...

However, Mike Grell explained otherwise (while also noting that Simmons or the interviewer of Simmons misspelled Jon Sable)...

In 1999, I wrote both a novel and a screenplay for SABLE, determined to see my own vision of the character realized. I had just received the publishing contract when Gene Simmons phoned to enquire about the movie rights. The movie was optioned by PACIFICA/INTERMEDIA in 2000 and prepped for production in 2001. That year, a SAG strike was looming and any film that was to see production would have to be started by March 15–-The Ides Of March—in order to ensure that the actors would be available for post production, looping and ADR. At that point, the studio felt the script needed a bit of fine-tuning and, rather than rush into production, decided to postpone the shoot until October. Unfortunately, on 9/11/2001 the Twin Towers came down and, in the aftermath, foreign funding for the movie evaporated. When the option expired it was never renewed and the movie rights reverted to me.

Mike seems to have everything clear there, right? So I'm going with Mike on this one.

Check out my latest Movie Legends Revealed - What mask did Michael Myers nearly wear in the original Halloween film?

OK, that's it for this week!

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