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.
Ryan Reynolds has departed Summit’s Highlander reboot. This leaves the picture without either a lead actor or a director, as Juan Carlos Fresnadillo exited last year citing creative differences. Producers Neal Moritz and Peter Davis had been searching for a replacement director with Reynolds waiting in the wings. This comes as a clean slate of sorts with the studio now able to search for a new leading man and a compatible director. As The Wrap reports, Reynolds would have played “Connor MacLeod, an immortal Scottish swordsman forced to confront the Kurgan, a brutal barbarian who lusts for the fabled ‘Prize.’” Reynolds will next be heard voicing the lead character in DreamWorks Animation’s Turbo, followed by a live-action role opposite Jeff Bridges in R.I.P.D., opening the same week.
Although he joined the Highlander reboot well over a year ago, director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (28 Weeks Later) has reportedly exited the picture. Fresnadillo and Summit Entertainment had been working on the reboot, but apparently did not see eye to eye; the director’s departure was on good terms. Fresnadillo previously exited a reboot of The Crow to helm Highlander, and it’s not yet clear if the previous position is still available. (Should we add him to the list of potential Star Wars: Episode VII directorial candidates while we’re at it?). Hit the jump for more.
Ryan Reynolds has had a difficult time getting his “action leading man” career to take off. He’s an undeniably talented guy, but he was only briefly seen as Deadpool in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and Green Lantern failed to connect with audiences. He’s long been attached to a Deadpool spinoff film, but that project has been in the development stages for some time now. However, that all might change as Lionsgate/Summit is apparently keen on the actor taking the lead in their reboot of the Highlander franchise. Hit the jump for more.
Last month, we reported that Fast Five helmer Justin Lin was no longer attached to direct the Highlander reboot. It made sense, as he’s got quite a full plate at the moment (Terminator, Fast Six, etc.), and he’s still staying on Highlander in a producing capacity. Now it looks like a replacement may have been found, as 28 Weeks Later helmer Juan Carlos Fresnadillo is currently the frontrunner to take the job. Deadline reports that Fresnadillo is in now in discussions to take the reins of the reboot of the 1986 film that starred Christopher Lambert.
The Highlander script has gone through a few iterations, as The Wibberleys (National Treasure) wrote the first draft, then Twilight screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg took a pass at it, and most recently Iron Man scribes Art Marcum and Matt Holloway were hired to lend their pen. In addition to Highlander, Fresnadillo is also attached to direct a remake of The Crow. Bradley Cooper recently dropped out as star of that film, but Mark Wahlberg and Channing Tatum have been mentioned as possible replacements.
[Update: Summit Entertainment has reached out and confirmed that Fresnadillo will indeed direct Highlander with production set to begin in Spring 2012.]
Amidst the explosion of recent success he has enjoyed, director Justin Lin (Fast Five) has stepped aside as the director of Summit Entertainment’s Highlander reboot. Lin had been attached to direct the film since Summit acquired the rights to the property back in May of 2008. However, his schedule is somewhat hectic of late what with plans to direct Fast and Furious 6 next and potentially the latest Terminator installment after that. All scheduling issues aside, though, Lin will remain on the project in an executive producer capacity.
Hit the jump for more on the future of the reboot.
RCR Media Group has sent out a press release announcing they’re co-financing the Highlander reboot with Summit Entertainment and Neal Moritz Productions. For those unfamiliar with the premise, it’s about immortal guys called Highlanders who cut off each other’s heads until only one Highlander remains. Then he gets a special prize and a Queen song plays. The press release reports that Fast Five director Justin Lin is still attached, but keep in mind that his plate is filling up with other projects due to the success of Fast Five. Not only does Universal want to hit the gas on Fast and Furious 6, but Lin is also attached to Terminator 5. Does he want to make the first great Highlander movie (the original is campy fun, but not a great movie) or does he want to go to a film that’s likelier to succeed like Fast 6 or T5?
The press release also announces that Art Marcum and Matt Holloway (Iron Man) wrote the screenplay, but back in February we reported that Twilight screenwriter Melissa Rosenberg had been hired to rewrite the script that was originally penned by The Wibberleys (National Treasure) . Neither Rosenberg nor The Wibberleys are mentioned in the press release, which you can read after the jump.
Well that was unexpected. Melissa Rosenberg, who has written the screenplays for all of the Twilight films, is in negotiations to come on board the Highlander reboot to work on that script. Justin Lin (Fast Five) is on board to direct the film, which will be a remake of the 1986 Christopher Lambert cheese-fest classic (and winner of the Academy Award for Best Movie Ever, according to Ricky Bobby). Neal Mortiz is producing the film, and when he recently sat down with Steve he said that the film will “stay true to the core of what we believe Highlander is,” but they also want to make it “for people who are new to the franchise.”
The most recent draft of the script was written by The Wibberley’s (National Treasure). Heat Vision’s report doesn’t state if Rosenberg is coming in to do “touch-ups” or to completely re-tool the script. There’s no release date set for the film yet, but it’s presumed to be Lin’s next film.
About two weeks ago, I sat down with producer Neal H. Moritz for an awesome interview where we talked about everything he has in development and how he got into making movies. Due to how long the interview was, I ran many articles under the headline “Seven Days With Neal Moritz”, and broke up each part by what movies we covered.
Due to how successful the articles were, I figured some of you might want to read the entire interview as it actually happened. Also, I’m a huge fan of listening to what people have to say and not reading it as a transcript, so besides the full interview, after the jump you can also get the audio.
During the interview we talked about 3D, R.I.P.D., the Highlander reboot, Fast and the Furious 5/6, Shane Black’s Doc Savage, his remake of Total Recall, Flash Gordon, Battle: Los Angeles, Green Hornet, Jack the Giant Killer, Preacher, S.W.A.T. 2, the remake of Escape From New York, Man-Witch, The Boys, Sinbad, and so much more. It’s an awesome interview and one I cannot recommend enough:
While some of you might have thought I was done with “Seven Days with Producer Neal Moritz,” trust me, I’m just getting warmed up. Last week I posted what he said about R.I.P.D., Fast and the Furious 5/6 and his remake of Highlander, and tonight’s it’s an update on Shane Black’s Doc Savage, his remake of Total Recall, and what’s up with Flash Gordon.
The quick update is he’s waiting on scripts for all three projects but says he’s about to get Doc Savage and Total Recall. He went on to say that Shane Black did some work on the Battle: Los Angeles script and while he’s tried to attach him to many projects, it was his love for Doc Savage that finally reeled him in.
And regarding the remake of Total Recall, Moritz said Kurt Wimmer is writing the script and it’s going to be closer to the Philip K. Dick story, We Can Remember It for You Wholesale, than a remake of the Schwarzenegger movie. He also says they’re not going to Mars but I forgot to ask if Quato is in the movie. I hope he is. Hit the jump for his exact quotes:
Over the past few months I’ve landed interviews with a few movie producers (Mike De Luca, Dan Lin) that have a lot of projects in development. Since the interviews cover so many movies, I’ve called the series “Seven Days With…” so I can break down each interview into smaller sections. While you may have thought the series was over…it was only because I’ve been trying to land my next interviewee and today begins “Seven Days With Producer Neal H. Moritz.”
If you look over Moritz’s IMDb profile, you’ll see he’s producing some huge projects like Doc Savage, Man-Witch, Hench, 21 Jump Street, Jack the Giant Killer, xXx, Battle: Los Angeles, Green Hornet, Flash Gordon, and so many other movies it would be impossible to list them all here. All you need to know is…over the next week, you can expect tons of updates on almost everything he’s involved with and what he thinks about 3D, how he got started as a producer, and so much more.
While I debated where to start “Seven Days With Neal Moritz”, I went with his very popular franchise and a another franchise that’s about to get a reboot: Fast and the Furious and Highlander! So if you’re curious about either series, hit the jump for info on Fast and the Furious 5 and 6 as well as what’s up with the reboot of Highlander:
“Highlander” is such a delightfully silly movie. Christopher Lambert’s Swiss accent, original songs by Queen, Clancy Brown decapitating folks as he makes his way through the story, and Sean Connery all make for a movie that is cheesy 80s action but through a camp-fantasy filter. You can’t really call it a “franchise” because that implies that anything after the first film was successful. The biggest success following “Highlander” was that the title of the sequel had the sub-title, “The Quickening”.
And now “Fast & Furious” director Justin Lin wants to remake it. Hit the jump to read the full press release and why this remake could work but not because of Justin Lin.