Bruckheimer Adapting Pressfield’s Killing Rommel

Ah, “Gates of Fire”. That notorious Steven Pressfield novel turned script that has been floating around Hollywood for what seems like ages. Before there was Zack Snyder and his “300”, there was Pressfield’s “Gates of Fire”, which also chronicled the 300 Spartans’ last stand against the Persians at Thermopylae (aka the Hot Gates) in 480 B.C.. Will this movie ever be made? Probably not, although Universal still controls it, and doesn’t seem all that anxious to get it made, even after the success of “300”. Too bad, they should have gotten this thing into production before Snyder’s movie, because now if they do end up making it, it’ll only look like they’re Johnny Come Latelys trying to crib on “300’s” nut sack. Stupid Universal.

Anyways, Pressfield’s latest novel is “Killing Rommel”, a fictional take on actual events, which Variety says is about:

…the British Long Range Desert Group and its attempt to stop Rommel, the legendary Desert Fox who routed the British in the North African desert in 1942 and threatened to overrun the Middle East thanks to his battlefield strategies and Panzer tanks.

Explosion master Jerry Bruckheimer and Disney have picked up the book’s movie rights, and set William Wallace (scribe on “Braveheart”, “Pearl Harbor”, and writer and director of “We Were Soldiers”) to adapt it into a movie with Pressfield.

More about the book’s storyline from

Pressfield effortlessly gives fresh life to wartime romance and the rigors of combat in a superior WWII thriller. Framed as the memoir of a British officer, the book is based on an actual British plot to assassinate the “Desert Fox,” German field marshal Erwin Rommel, during late 1942 and early 1943 in North Africa. The author painstakingly sets the stage for later fireworks by charting the prewar career of R. Lawrence “Chap” Chapman, especially his relationship with the brilliant but doomed Zachary Stein, Chap’s tutor and mentor at Oxford. Chap also falls in love with sexy Rose McCall, whose brains and brass later get her posted to naval intelligence in Egypt. As a young lieutenant, Chap joins the team assembled to go after Rommel. Pressfield expertly juxtaposes the personal with the historical, with authentic battle descriptions. Crisp writing carries readers through success, failure and a final face-to-face encounter with Rommel that’s no less exciting for knowing the outcome.

One hopes Wallace will steer clear of the soul-stomping love triangle crap of “Pearl Harbor” with “Killing Rommel”. One hopes, anyway.

And get “Gates of Fire” made, damn you!

Killing Rommel