Director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) left the Highlander reboot nearly a year ago, reportedly over creative differences. Ryan Reynolds quickly followed Fresnadillo out the door, but Summit presses on. The studio hired Cedric Nicolas-Troyan to direct Highlander. Nicolas-Troynan most recently served as the visual effects supervisor and second unit director on Snow White and the Huntsman, but Highlander will be his first feature as a director.
Neal H. Moritz and Justin Lin (Fast & Furious 6) will produce the new take on the Scottish immortal Connor MacLeod. Nicolas-Troyan will supervise the next rewrite on the script by Art Marcum and Matt Holloway (Iron Man) before casting for a 2014 start date. More after the jump.
Nicolas-Troynan describes his love of the property to Deadline:
“I have been working on my pitch for this since the summer, and when I got there I met the original producer and I just started geeking out and he loved it. The first movie came out when I was a teenager in France and it was one of my favorite films of those years. I loved the series also, they shot a lot of it in France, on the Seine River. My first reaction, like everybody else, was, really, do we need a remake? Then I read the script, and I thought about how Russell Mulcahy was this super visual video director who brought the pulse of the 80s to the film so well. I started thinking about taking those great characters and matching them with a modern, visceral take, and then I was in love with the idea and I just went for it. …
For me, it all comes down to that first movie, but there are great themes in the show. It’s the rare cross-genre concept that has elements of the Western, time travel, fantasy, action, contemporary. There are universal themes, but of course you need to provide the answers like the first film did. Who are these guys with swords? Why are they fighting each other? What is the prize and how are they drawn to each other? There is far more at work here I want to explore than the lightning that happens during the Quickening.”
I liked the Huntsman visual effects, so I hope Nicolas-Troyan manages to find a fresh approach to the material that he knows.
Here’s the trailer for the 1986 Christopher Lambert movie: