March 18, 2013
Remake Of ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK Back On Track With Producer Joel Silver, Will Gerard Butler Reconsider Taking The Lead?
Looks like the remake of John Carpenter's Escape From New York is getting new life thanks to producer Joel Silver (Lethal Weapon, Predator, The Matrix, Die Hard, 48 Hours, Commando, ) and his Silver Pictures (who are teaming up with Studio Canal) according to Deadline. Joel is no stranger to the action genre and has a solid track record. New Line Cinema had been trying to put together a reboot with producer Neal Moritz (Total Recall 2012) and Breck Eisner (The Crazies) attached to direct. Actors such as Tom Hardy (Inception, Mad Max Fury Road, Dark Knight Rises), Jeremy Renner (The Town, Avengers, Hurt Locker) and Gerard Butler (300, Olympus Has Fallen) had been in the mix for Snake Plissken but the project ultimtely went into limbo. New Line lost the rights which allowed Silver Pictures to pickup the film's rights. Joel is looking to reboot the entire franchise, starting with an origin story for Snake which will lead to a trilogy. This gives the impression we might see a fresh take on the material along with learning how Plissken went from war hero to the most notorious convict. They are currently on a search for writers and a director will likely soon follow that announcement.
It won't be hard to imagine Joel trying to wrangle the linked actors back into talks. Hardy has attached himself to a number of projects (Splinter Cell, Child 44, Animal Rescue) and already has his budding Mad Max franchise which get a fasted-tracked sequel, it's unlikely he'll be considered this round. Renner might also have issues as sequels to Avengers, Bourne Legacy, Mission Impossible and Witch Hunters are in the works. Out of the original three I see Butler ending up with the role. His upcoming film Olympus Has Fallen is in the same ballpark and could prove he's ready to carry an action franchise on his shoulders. Silver produced RockNRolla which starred Gerard and was directed by Guy Ritchie (Joel also produces Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes franchise).
Liam Neeson's name has been mentioned for the role (Silver has produced Neeson's Unknown and the upcoming Non-Stop). However, if the trilogy talk is true they might looking for a younger actor that will be able to commit to three films. I could see others such as Chris Hemsworth and Jai Courtney in the mix for the role as well.