Two-time Jeopardy winner and frequent Reddit user James Erwin thought today was just another day when he elaborated on the Ask Reddit question, “Could I destroy the entire Roman Empire during the reign of Augustus if I traveled back in time with a modern U.S. Marine infantry battalion or MEU?” His story quickly took off and exploded the internet in a response which landed him a Hollywood agent with a sweet, new Warner Bros. movie deal. To hear more about Erwin’s tale, hit the jump.
I’ll take How To Make It In Hollywood for 200, Alex. The answer is do exactly what Des Moine, Iowa’s James Erwin did, and pitch a movie concocted entirely through Reddit. The story and potential feature is titled “Rome Sweet Rome” and follows a group of Marines as they travel back into the past to take down one of the world’s most legendary villains. To return home, the Marine’s must then set history back on the track they originally altered. So the ultimate goal is for them to wipe out the villain without disrupting current day. Think “Back to the Future”, but with Marine’s and less incest.
Variety.com broke this exclusive about the discovery of the short story:
“Madhouse Entertainment’s Adam Kolbrenner spotted Erwin’s “Rome, Sweet Rome” posts once they reached the top of Reddit and moved quickly to contact the writer and begin working with him to develop the concept. When it came time to find a home for the project, Kolbrenner brought it to WB’s Chris Gary, a young exec who encouraged the studio to move aggressively to acquire it.”
James is currently writing the script with a great deal of support on his own section of Reddit. Head there now to join the discussion. Tell them MovieViral sent ya.