Thursday, November 16, 2017

Fox Developing X-Men's MULTIPLE MAN with James Franco

Multiple Man, Multiple Man, doing the things that a multiple can...

Deadline has revealed that Fox is developing a film based on the Marvel Comics mutant superhero Multiple Man, with James Franco starring in the title role.  

According to the article, Wonder Woman scribe Allan Heinberg will write the script.  Simon Kinberg and his Genre Films will produce along with Franco and Ramona Films, which Franco runs with brother Dave Franco and Vincent Jolivette.

Franco, 39, is best known for the film 127 Hours and as Harry Osborn in the movies Spider-Man, Spider-Man 2, and Spider-Man 3.  His other films include Alien: Covenant, Why Him?, Sausage Party, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Oz the Great and Powerful, This is the End, Milk, Flyboys, Tristan & Isolde, and Never Been Kissed.  He's also appeared in various episodes of the television series The X-Files, Freaks and Geeks, General Hospital, 11.22.63, and 30 Rock.

Created in 1975 by Len Wein, Chris Claremont and John Buscema, Multiple Man first appeared in Giant-Size Fantastic Four #4 as James "Jamie" Madrox, who was born to a family living near the Los Alamos research facility in New Mexico.  The background radiation presumably caused his mutation at birth, when the doctor's slap caused him to multiply into two identical babies.  Professor Charles Xavier, a friend of the Madrox family, suggested that they move to Kansas to raise the boy in privacy.  Dr. Daniel Madrox, Jamie's father, created a suit for him to wear which was designed to absorb kinetic energy, the source of the duplication.  When Jamie was fifteen years old, his parents were killed by a tornado alleged to have been caused by Damian Tryp, and Jamie began to run the family farm by himself along with his duplicates, or "dupes", until his suit was damaged.

Jamie went to New York City for help where he met Mister Fantastic of the Fantastic Four, who contacted Professor Xavier for assistance.  Xavier sent Jamie to Muir Island to work with Moira MacTaggert in her laboratory and help her with mutant research.  He soon helped Moira and fellow mutants Havok and Polaris in searching for the escaped mutant Proteus. Proteus hijacked one of Madrox's duplicates as his own body, although this did not harm Jamie.  Following the X-Men's battle with Proteus on Muir Island, Madrox was invited to join the X-Men, but he declined.  One of Jamie's renegade duplicates later searched with Siryn for the runaway New Mutants Sunspot and Warlock.  Siryn and Jamie briefly joined the mutant group known as the Fallen Angels.

Jamie was one of the residents of Muir Island who fell under the mental control of the Shadow King.  Following the destruction of Muir Island and the defeat of the Shadow King, Madroz became a member of the second incarnation of the X-Factor team, which was assembled by Val Cooper as a U.S. government response team.  Here, he developed a reputation as a prankster, forming a friendship with teammate Strong Guy.  Also on the team was former New Mutant Wolfsbane, who later joined his X-Factor Investigations.  During this time, Jamie and Siryn had sex, with Siryn becoming pregnant as a result.  Siryn gave birth to a boy named Sean, after her own father.  Just hours after Sean's birth, however, he was absorbed into Jamie's body as Jamie held the boy, completely against Jamie's will.  Jamie realized that the baby must have been fathered by a dupe rather than by him, and that "the offspring of a dupe isn't really anything more than a dupe". 

Jamie eventually fell in love with another X-Factor teammate, Layla Miller, with the two later marrying in Las Vegas.  During the Death of X storyline, however, Jamie transmitted a message to Cyclops and his X-Men requesting aid.  Arriving on Muir Island, where Jamie  had been stationed on his own, the X-Men found him dying after succumbing to the Terrigen Mist cloud that had affected him.  Because of his death, the X-Men realized how dangerous the Terrigen Mists are to mutants.

Franco will be the second actor to portray Multiple Man in live action, after Eric Dane in the movie X-Men: The Last Stand.  The character has also appeared in various animated projects, including X-Men, X-Men: Evolution (voiced by David A. Kaye) and Wolverine and the X-Men (voiced by Crispin Freeman).

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