A big screen adaptation of this popular graphic novel has been “in the works” since 2008 when I first wrote about it on my old blog, although nothing’s been reported on its progress in years, so it’s anyone’s guess whether it’ll eventually happen.
The producer of A History Of Violence and Red Eye (JC Spink) owns the rights to the property and planned to adapt the critically acclaimed fanboy/fangirl classic titled, Y: The Last Man.
In the comic book series, Yorick Brown, a young amateur escape artist, and his monkey, Ampersand, suddenly become the last two men on earth after something mysterious wipes out every mammal on the planet possessing a Y chromosome – including embryos, fertilized eggs, and even sperm. Society is plunged into chaos as infrastructures collapse and the surviving women everywhere try to cope with the loss of the men.
Yorick goes on a mission to find his girlfriend Beth, who is supposed to be on vacation in Australia, and we go along with him on that expedition, accompanied by his body guard, Agent 355.
And it’s with Agent 355 that our interests primarily lie with the project.
Way back in 2008 when I first heard and wrote about the project, Alicia Keys was the producer’s choice to play Agent 355 – an employee of a secretive US government agency. The character is listed 2nd in the list of credits, indicative of how substantial the role is. I’m not familiar with the graphic novel (those who are can chime in), but every rendition I’ve seen of Agent 355 presents her as a black woman.
Alicia Keys was his first choice, but he also mentioned Zoe Saldana, adding that “by then [the time the film would be made] Star Trek will be out and she’ll be huge.” Star Trek is out, but no Y: The Last Man.
Agent 355 is pretty much a bad-ass! She kicks butt, and confidently handle a variety of weapons – after all, she works for a secretive government agency.
And while neither actress is attached to the project (as far as I know), if there were the producers two top choices, I’d pick Zoe over Alicia. At least I’ve seen Zoe as an action hero, and that’s all I have to go on.
The closest Keys has come to a character like Agent 355 was as Georgia Sykes in Smokin’ Aces, a film I didn’t care for, although I don’t recall her performance much.
And by the way, the star of the graphic novel, Yorick, is naturally a white dude, who, at the time, was to be played by the then young “it” guy, Shia Labeouf, whose name seemed to show up attached to every new project during that year.
Fast-forward to 2012, 4 years later, and filmmaker Christian Cardona’s fan-made film adaptation of the graphic novel, which he titles Y: The Last Man Rising, which stars Travis Quentin Young as Yorick Brown, Kent King as Agent 355, and Rebecca Marshall as Hero Brown.
Kent King’s resume comprises of mostly TV work, appearing in soaps like General Hospital, and guest starring roles in sitcoms like The Steve Harvey Show and The Jamie Foxx Show.
Watch Cardona’s 20-minute adaptation below (courtesy of IGN); for a fan-made film, it’s actually pretty good, although I don’t know what his budget was (as an aside, I would love to see a filmmaker do this same thing with say Black Panther for example – make a short fan-made movie):