Disney is finally reviving The Rocketeer with a brand new film for Disney+ written by Ed Ricourt, that might see David Oyelowo potentially star as the titular hero. The Return of The Rocketeer will be produced by David and Jessica Oyelowo under their Yoruba Saxon banner.
The Return of the Rocketeer will have an all-new creative directive with Ricourt’s story focusing on a retired Tuskegee airman who takes up the mantle of the Rocketeer.
At one point, it was said the project would focus on a female black protagonist, so much for that.
The original Rocketeer came out in 1991, during a brief era of period-set comic book films trying to capitalize on the success of Tim Burton’s Batman. Other big-budget studios films from that era include Dick Tracy, The Shadow, and The Phantom.
Considering new technology such as Lucasfilm’s StageCraft/The Volume used on The Mandalorian, it could make for a fantastical new adventure film and potentially lead to multiple installments, given I assume their aim will to be serialize the character.
This action role doesn’t sound terribly foreign to David Oyelowo after playing a Tuskegee airman in the George Lucas-produced WWII film Red Tails.
RED TAILS – During World War II, the Civil Aeronautics Authority selects 13 black cadets to become part of an experimental program at the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama. The program aims at training “colored personnel” to become fighter pilots for the Army. However, discrimination, lack of institutional support and the racist belief that these men lacked the intelligence and aptitude for the job dog their every step. Despite this, the Tuskegee Airmen, as they become known, more than prove their worth.
THE ROCKETEER – Cliff Secord (Bill Campbell) is a cocky stunt pilot in love with a beautiful actress, Jenny Blake (Jennifer Connelly). When he discovers a jet pack hidden in a biplane, Cliff straps on the rocket, dons a flashy helmet and becomes the high-flying hero known as The Rocketeer. But when Nazis want to use the rocket as a weapon, Cliff must use his alter ego to both protect Jenny from an evil actor (Timothy Dalton) and save the day in this period adventure based on the comic books by Dave Stevens.