Summit has been developing a Highlander reboot for years now but there were a few bumps in the road. Last year, the studio hired visual effects artist Cedric Nicolas-Troyan to make Highlander his feature directorial debut. Now Summit has set their sights on their dream casting centerpiece: Tom Cruise. The Wrap reports the studio is courting Cruise to play the mentor role that Sean Connery took on in the 1986 film. Cruise is busy shooting crazy stunts for Mission: Impossible 5, so it’s unclear if the in-demand actor is interested. A Cruise representative is direct that the actor is “far from talks” for Highlander: “He is offered tons of projects.” At the very least, this suggests Summit has higher aspirations for the property than I would have guessed. If they do land Cruise, I picture the rest of the casting falling into place sooner than later so Summit can rachet up the development process.
Art Marcum, Matt Holloway, and Melissa Rosenberg contributed to the Highlander script. Neal H. Moritz, Peter Davis, and Justin Lin will produce. More after the jump.
Nicolas-Troynan previously described his love for the property:
“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.”
Here’s the trailer for the 1986 Christopher Lambert movie: