As befitting a man who had several different identities and is also long dead and can’t say shit about it, Leonardo da Vinci is suddenly a subject of great interest for film and television adaptations that re-imagine his life as something approaching comic-book levels of mythology. Following up on David Goyer’s recently announced plans to explore the sexy side of the Renaissance with Da Vinci’s Demons—a show that will finally reveal the “untold” (i.e. mostly made-up) story of da Vinci’s youth, when he was merely dreaming of the future in between alleged acts of sodomy—Universal has announced its own, slightly less smutty “young da Vinci” project, Leonardo, a spec script from children’s television writer Jonny Kurzman.
As overseen by Watchmen and Hellboy producer Larry Gordon, the action-adventure film will find a young da Vinci on a “quest to stop Renaissance Europe from returning to the Dark Ages” with his heroically detailed sketching of the human form and mastering of composition and shading. “Grrrr, the strong, confident lines of his anatomical studies and the breadth of his polymath interests have thwarted us! For now!” the secret society of Dark Ages wizards or whatever will say as they shrink back into the forest, and da Vinci flies directly into the camera in his just-completed wooden helicopter. And then the audience cries in concert, “To the library!”