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Disney’s ‘Rocketeer’ reboot gains momentum with a black female lead

Disney’s Rocketeer reboot is flying on a new path. The project, which is titled The Rocketeers, will reportedly center on a black female pilot, according to THR.

Although the original film came out 25 years ago, in 1991, the sequel-reboot will pick up just six years later. Times have changed, though, because this time around, a female character will serve as the protagonist. The Rocketeer, Cliff Secord, was previously played by Billy Campbell.

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The Rocketeer, based on the 1980s comic by Dave Stevens, was set in 1938. The story followed Secord, a stunt pilot, who discovered a rocket pack that needed to be kept away from Nazis, mobsters, and even the FBI. The hero was described as “an airborne Indiana Jones.”

At this point, the reboot is still in the early stages of development. However, basic plot elements are (not surprisingly) similar: The pilot will also find a jet pack, and she’ll have to keep it out of the hands of a corrupt rocket scientist. While Secord is supposed to have vanished, the fact that the title is reportedly The Rocketeers seems noteworthy. Perhaps we can expect to see more than one jet-packed hero flying around.

The idea of a reboot of The Rocketeer has been floating around in recent years, but this is the first time made we’ve heard of the project featuring a female lead. The move was apparently made in part to differentiate the Rocketeer character from Iron Man, but it also has the added benefit of bringing much-needed diversity to the big screen. Women and minority groups are notoriously underrepresented in lead film roles, as numerous studies have pointed out.

The script for the project is being written by Max Winkler and Matt Spicer, while Brigham Taylor and Blake Griffin are set to produce. Disney’s Tendo Nagenda and Chaz Salembier are overseeing the project. No timeline for its release has yet been announced.