‘Y: The Last Man’ Movie is “Not Happening”; Rights Reverted To Creators

By September 26, 2014

The on-going saga of whether or not a film adaptation of Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra’s comic book series “Y: The Last Man” will exist has been happening for ages, and now we’re back on the NOT HAPPENING side of it again. Unlike Elvis, it’s definitely dead.

Y The Last Man

Would-be director Dan Trachtenberg tweeted the following when a fan asked about the progress on the film:


“Y: The Last Man” is the story of Yorick Brown and his pet monkey Ampersand, who become the only surviving male mammals on the planet when a mysterious virus wipes out the entire male species.

dan-trachtenberg Valencia_huge

After a replying to the tweet, /Film spoke with Trachtenberg (above) – who is currently in pre-production on The Cellar for Bad Robot – and he laid it all out.

The (film) rights reverted back to Brian (Vaughan) quite a few months ago. I had such a great time working on that project and am truly sad the things we were cooking up can no longer happen. Like everyone else who’s a fan of the series I had always wished it either remain in its comic book form. Or, if it must be made, a TV series would be the only thing that would suffice.

However, the “big screen” and the “small screen” has changed drastically since Y came out and I think so much of the great TV in our current “golden age” has been directly or indirectly inspired by “Y the Last Man”. I started getting excited about bringing to the BIG screen what we’ve been getting in TV so readily now— great characters, RELATIONSHIPS, world building and genre re-combination.

Trachtenberg went on to talk about what he would’ve done, had everything gone to plan:

Truly- I was excited to make an ADVENTURE movie, with swashbuckle, that was fun and funny but had something to say. Which is something that is distinctly BKV. Having real, true, honest, people stuff amidst the big, fun, action stuff. We were in many ways quite faithful to the comic, though some characters were combined and some events re-arranged and some brief moments of action we dug into to create bigger action/adventure sequences.

The script was essentially the first two trades. Taking inspiration from the original Star Wars (Episode 4)- we wanted to tell a complete story…but not the whole story.  Hoping that, in success, we could get tell the rest of our serialized adventure. Raiders of the Lost Ark was referenced a lot. Midnight Run and Big Trouble in Little China were referenced a lot. Willow and Ladyhawke I may have referenced a little too often.

And without going into detail as to why the project died again, he ended with:

In the end, working with all the producers and the writers was a great experience. And getting to meet Brian, who has been such an inspiration to me over the years was incredible. He’s as great a person as he is a writer. And now “Y: The Last Man” is back where it should be, with its creator. I’m not sure Brian will ever want to do anything more with it and I’m not sure that he needs to. His latest comics “Saga” and “The Private Eye” are great and we should be reading them. His “never-been-made” screenplays are some of my favorite reads ever (Roundtable, specifically).  I hope we can convince him to write us some more awesome original movies and TV— but I think comics is where his heart lies.


While fans of the comic book who hoped it would hit the big or small screen are bummed the project has stalled, Trachtenberg leaves a bit of parting wisdom:

Alas…we will always have that thing we fell in love with — that’s not going anywhere.

Silver lining: I’ve never read “Y: The Last Man” but HAVE read the first few issues of Brian K. Vaughn’s “Saga” and loved it, so I’m now looking forward to checking out this series! [Editor’s note: “Y: The Last Man” is a must-read. It’s one of the best pieces of pop entertainment I’ve ever read.]

What say you? Are you happy or sad the film’s dead?

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Cricket Lee
Star Wars fangirl. Named Best Kisser by Time Magazine. CEO/Host: Girl Gamer; host of Gecken: GeekNation; writer: Dread Central. You'll have a crush on me soon. Vote Quimby. Twitter: @crixlee http://www.imdb.me/crixlee