We first heard about Platinum Dunes’ new sci-fi project Almanac back in October, and details were hard to come by. Basically, all we knew at the time was that Dean Israelite would be directing, Michael Bay would be involved in a producer's role, and that the project was being compared to the found-footage film Chronicle. That has apparently changed today.
A Bleeding Cool source has revealed some of the inner workings of the film’s plot – Almanac won’t be a superhero film, but will instead revolve around time travel. Here’s the basic breakdown from Brendon Connelly at the site:
“The lead character, David, is a smart kid in high school but he’s finding dating hard. He’s drawn to Jessie, the typical popular girl, and decides that he’ll try to attract her by winning the science fair, and the college scholarship that will net him. Bless.
David’s late father was a scientist and so he looks through his dad’s stuff for ideas – and he finds two things of note. One gives him the ability to time travel… and the other is a sports almanac. Anybody who has seen Back to the Future 2 can guess where this is headed.
Two more of David’s friends travel back through time with him to abuse the almanac. Timelines get messed with, we learn more about David’s Dad’s research and there’s apparently a couple of pretty big twists…”
Sounds pretty cool, although Connelly goes on to mention that he was able to guess one of the big plot twists and that he hopes it’s not quite so obvious when viewing the actual film (although, most time-travel story plot twists seem fairly obvious at this point, don’t they?)
The sports gambling in the past component was also a key piece of Stephen King’s novel 11/22/63, wherein a high school English teacher finds a door to the past that allows him to attempt to save President Kennedy from being assassinated. He subsidizes some of his adventures in the past by betting on sporting events where he knows the outcome. That project has also been optioned for the screen.
If all of this turns out to be true, Almanac sounds like it could be another solid time-travel flick – one that would sit comfortably alongside other recent gems in the subgenre like Looper and Timecrimes. We’ll have to wait and see how this one develops moving through preproduction, but we like the general direction so far. In the meantime, let us know what you think in the comment section.