Much like its protagonist Oh Daesu, the remake of Chan-wook Park’s Oldboy is very hard to kill (provided the opponent is a thug in a long corridor). Last November, we reported that Mandate Pictures was still interested in the remake and loved the script by Mark Protosevich (I Am Legend) turned in. The studio was looking at Steven Spielberg, Matthew Vaughn, and Danny Boyle to take the director’s chair, but now a new name has gone on the list. Twitch reports that Spike Lee is in talks to direct the film. While I think an American remake of Oldboy is a bad idea, it could still be a hit and if it gives Lee the boost he needs to make more personal films, then so be it.
Back in 2009, Will Smith was reportedly interested in the lead role, but now that’s a laugh. Quentin Tarantino wrote Smith a raw, challenging role for Django Unchained and Smith passed (Jamie Foxx will play the role instead). It’s unlikely he would play the lead in a dark revenge thriller. On the other hand, frequent Lee collaborator Denzel Washington would be a great choice.