Hollywood has been trying to revive the 1981 comedy The Cannonball Run for quite some time now, and the project has gained steam once more. Night at the Museum director Shawn Levy flirted with the idea of updating the star-studded comedy with Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson back in 2010, then the following year filmmaker Guy Ritchie circled the project with an eye towards Brad Pitt starring, but obviously those iterations never came to fruition. Now, per Variety, Warner Bros. has revived the film with Get Hard writer/director Etan Cohen writing and directing.
The original film was directed by Hal Neeham and featured an all-star cast of Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Dean Martin, Farrah Fawcett, Dom DeLuise, Jackie Chan, and Jamie Farr as a group of individuals who form teams to take part in a cross-country car race, doing whatever it takes along the way to win. The film spawned a notoriously terrible sequel in 1984, but Warner Bros clearly sees franchise potential in the property and has now turned to Cohen to take the helm.
Cohen cut his teeth as a writer on shows like Beavis and Butt-Head and King of the Hill before co-writing the scripts for Idiocracy and Tropic Thunder, and penning Men in Black 3 solo. Last year’s somewhat controversial Will Ferrell/Kevin Hart comedy Get Hard marked Cohen’s directorial debut, and fresh off the film’s $111 million worldwide box office total, Warner Bros. feels confident in handing Cohen the reins to the Cannonball Run franchise.
Given Cohen’s history with Ferrell one wonders if the actor and some of his frequent collaborators might make up the ensemble of this new take on the property. There’s plenty of potential for a diverse comedic lineup here, so here’s hoping Cohen rounds up some exciting talents.
Check out the trailer for the original Cannonball Run below.