Exclusive: THE IMMORTAL Story Details; HULKAMANIA Will Run Wild On You
The wrestling trilogy ends today. After telling you about PANDEMONIUM and FIGHTING WITH MY FAMILY, I bring you the third story being developed about the squared circle: THE IMMORTAL. It’s the life story of Terry Bollea aka Hulk Hogan. He’s probably the most famous wrestler who has ever lived. We’ve also seen him in movies and TV shows. He’s transcended wrestling with his appearance in Rocky 3 and pop culture in general. His life has been filled with difficulties and real-life obstacles. The screenplay written by Steve Desmond and Michael Sherman started to circulate two months ago. It has not found a buyer yet.
We meet chubby teenage Terry Bollea. He gets bullied by his older brother and considered a loser at school. The young man is obsessed with one thing: Professional Wrestling. One night at his local sports arena, he discovers that professional wrestling is rigged. That discovery will change his entire existence. He starts training and bulking up. He begins to harass local Tampa promoter Mike Graham to have a shot at becoming a wrestler. He sends him to train with Hiro Matsuda. At the end of the first day of training, Hiro breaks Terry’s leg. Expecting never to see him again, Terry trains even harder after the gruesome injury. He finally makes his wrestling debut as “The Super Destroyer” in 1977. From that point on, Terry becomes a real wrestler. Soon enough a collaboration with Vince McMahon Sr and his son will mold him into Hulk Hogan and take him to the big time. Chubby Terry transforms into a wrestling icon.
There’s been a recent wave of wrestling biopics with FIGHTING WITH MY FAMILY (about WWE diva Paige) and PANDEMONIUM (the Vince McMahon story). How does THE IMMORTAL rank alongside them? Pretty well actually. Hulk Hogan’s life is pretty fascinating, and the writers do an excellent job of mining it well. Whoever plays the Hulkster will have a field day. He’s a very intriguing protagonist, and we want him to succeed. There are also fascinating supporting characters headlined by Vince McMahon and Andre The Giant. PANDEMONIUM tells the other side of that story through Vince’s eyes. I think there’s room for both films. Should the script deal with his recent scandals? Perhaps, but it’s not necessary for the story it is currently trying to tell.
Here are some details showcased in the story:
- He meets Dr. Zahorian while he’s training with Hiro Matsuda. We see him take steroids and other stuff.
- He gets arrested in Jersey with the Wild Samoans.
- Vince McMahon Sr gives him the name Hulk Hogan and decides to make him from Venice Beach, California.
- Sly Stallone turned him into an actor on Rocky 3 and made him bigger than he is in real life.
- How Vince had to sell to Bob Backlund and the Iron Sheik about Hulk becoming the champion. We witness of his creation of Wrestlemania and the spectacle of Hulk vs. Andre The Giant.
- Hulk continues to work through a huge number of injuries which will push him into prescription drugs
- The turning point is the federal trial of Vince for his involvement in steroids. Hulk’s very awkward interview on Arsenio Hall and how it almost derailed his career. Finally, how he testified at the trial and protected Vince.
- Eric Bischoff approaches Hulk to restart his wrestling career in WCW. We also see the birth of the evil Hollywood Hogan persona that cemented his legacy.
Screenwriting Tip: Make us care about your protagonist. The writers did a good job in THE IMMORTAL by building up Hulk Hogan. We see a strong dramatic arc from loser to larger than life hero. Chubby Terry Bollea is THE BIGGEST LOSER you ever meet. His inner desire to become a decent wrestler grows our appreciation and our emotional connection to him. It’s the perfect setup for a rag to riches story arc.
The potential is there for THE IMMORTAL and could be a fantastic movie. The millions of Hulkamaniacs will certainly be intrigued by the film. With a little work, this project could be a hit.
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