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JJ Abrams Goes Steampunk

His Bad Robot production company set to adapt the tale of a Victorian robot

JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot production company is to produce a big screen adaptation of Boilerplate: History’s Mechanical Marvel , a graphic novel/picture book hybrid about the world’s first robot, according to The Hollywood Reporter ’s Heat Vision Blog .

The book is a faux history of the mechanical man, built in the 1893, who interacted with historical figures such as Teddy Roosevelt, Lawrence of Arabia and Mark Twain, fought in the Spanish-American War, the Boxer Rebellion and World War I and even joined an expedition to the Antarctic. The book photoshops Boilerplate (actually a 12-inch articulated model) into real historical photos.

Although the actual book was only published last year, Boilerplate began life in 2000, when creator Paul Guinan online pitch for a graphic novel. It appeared so authentic some visitors to the site actually thought it was for real (good grief!).

Bad Robot will produce the movie for Paramount, with Deborah Newmyer ( The Ugly Truth ) as producer.