There was a lot of buzz for The Raid at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival, eventually earning it the Cadillac People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award. The original Indonesian film by director Gareth Evans (Merantau) has had its domestic distribution rights picked up by Sony Pictures Worldwide. It was assumed that sister company Screen Gems would pursue the rights to the remake and, for once, assumptions have proven correct.
Screen Gems has officially acquired the remake rights for The Raid, an action movie that tells the story of an elite SWAT team that gets pinned down in a tenement building controlled by a dangerous drug lord. On his side are two vicious martial arts experts, his own personal militia and a vast assortment of weapons. The SWAT team has only their wits, their weapons and the will to survive The Raid. Hit the jump to check out the original trailer.
The Indonesian action movie The Raid was a big hit at the Toronto International Film Festival, and writer/director Gareth Evans has the People’s Choice Midnight Madness Award to prove it. You can sample the crazy action in the trailer, and see why Sony Pictures Worldwide picked up the North American distribution rights months ago. Despite the universal appeal of SWAT teams and martial arts, The Raid still has one major commercial hindrance: it’s pretty Indonesian. Now that The Raid is in the Sony family, the logical move is for sister label Screen Gems to pursue a remake. The Americanization process will be interesting, and perhaps doomed—the original relies on the Indonesian martial art silat to flavor the action. It will be difficult to return the lightning to the bottle, especially since Evans has preemptively declined the job to focus on a shooting a sequel next February. It is not yet clear what Screen Gems has planned, though Heat Vision reassures the studio is “aware the unique fighting style is one of the movie’s strengths.” Awareness! That’s not not encouraging. Screen Gems is currently on the lookout for a director.
The Raid rode a wave of TIFF buzz to sell remaining worldwide distribution rights to Celluloid Nightmares, so you should be able to see the silat for yourself soon enough, no matter where you live. Hit the jump for the trailer and official synopsis.