While waiting for the Dec. 3 release of his critically-hailed 'Black Swan' and while negotiating his deal to direct Fox's 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine 2,' Darren Aronofsky will put his pedal to the metal for 'Machine Man,' a pop thriller for Mandalay Pictures, according to Variety.

The project is based on Australian author Max Barry's serialized online story and upcoming Vintage Book (due Spring 2011) that follows a wallflower tech firm engineer who decides to systematically replace his weak fleshy parts with high-end titanium performance upgrades. Unfortunately, some nasty people want to get their hands on him for their own nefarious ends. Kind of like 'RoboCop' meets 'Anatomy 2.'

Mark Heyman, who worked with Aronofsky as a co-producer of 'The Wrestler' and co-writer of 'Black Swan,' will write the adapted screenplay.

According to Variety, Mandalay, which has a first-look deal with Universal, bought the rights to Barry's manuscript in November 2009. As part of an interactive literary experiment, 'Machine Man' was published last year one page per day in real time as an online serial. Suggestions from readers were integrated into the plot as the story unfolded.

We kinda hope that Aronofsky's deal for 'Wolverine 2' falls through. The director needs to develop and work on edgy or controversial material -- he began his career with 1998's 'Pi,' for God's sake -- and falling into the Marvel fold is not my conception of being in the forefront of breakthrough directing. What do you think?
CATEGORIES Movies, Cinematical