Following rumblings and rumors that have been simmering in recent months, The Hollywood Reporter confirmed that Paramount Pictures is “deep in development” on a new G.I. Joe film. In addition to the long-gestating Snake Eyes spin-off that is currently slated for an Oct. 16, 2020 release, the screenwriting duo of Josh Appelbaum and Andre Nemec are penning what should relaunch the mainline G.I. Joe story, while making room for additional spin-offs in the years ahead. The pair has some history in adapting toyetic properties, having written the 2014 Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles reboot, and its 2016 sequel, TMNT: Out of the Shadows. Appelbaum and Nemec also penned Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, and this year’s Wonder Park.
The release slate for 2020 has seen quite a bit of shuffling already, with Snake Eyes, a film simply titled G.I. Joe, and the long-rumored title G.I. Joe: Ever Vigilant having swapped release dates from March to October on several occasions, with mixed information coming direct from Paramount and unconfirmed news showing up on industry tracking boards. Where it gets more confusing is that while there are some erroneous reports that the latest project confirmed by THR is to focus on a character called “Chuckles,” that’s not the case. In fact, the film confirmed by THR is likely G.I. Joe: Ever Vigilant, though the film may bear a different title (possibly just G.I. Joe) by the time it hits theaters. Chuckles — the ‘Joe Codename of Sergeant Philip M. Provost — is in the current screenplay, which is described as an ensemble piece. “While he [Chuckles] is not the center of the film, the project is in deep development and things could change,” says THR‘s Borys Kit.
Appelbaum and Nemec were first attached to Ever Vigilant through an exclusive, but since-removed article via the Hashtag Show in May of last year — complete with a fairly detailed synopsis that was widely shared, and still exists in many places, including leading G.I. Joe fansite, HissTank.
With Chuckles said to appear, there may be some added weight to the initial plot rumor that first surfaced last year — one involving fan-favorites Tomax and Xamot Paoli (pictured top), the twin brothers in charge of Cobra’s Crimson Guard. During the initial wave of reports on Appelbaum and Nemec’s involvement, the Paoli Brothers were mentioned as being central to the screenplay, in which they would be mounting plans to use a new WMD, with the G.I. Joe team called in to stop it. Coincidentally (or not), G.I. Joe comics published by both Devil’s Due and IDW Publishing have featured storylines involving Tomax and Xamot’s criminal fronts being infiltrated by Chuckles.
As we reported earlier this year, Hasbro was looking to hire a new senior brand manager to handle both G.I. Joe and Micronauts, and following some new merch collaborations, and crumbs dropped at CinemaCon and Licensing Expo this year, it was made clear that the wheels are in motion for a G.I. Joe comeback. All that’s missing is a formal announcement from Paramount and Hasbro to clear up all of the rumors.