With Jean-Claude Van Damme sporting that greasy, Jheri curl mullet, John Woo’s 1993 Hard Target, the Hong Kong action auteur’s first American film, is admittedly a wee bit cheesy. However, out of all of his subsequent films, it’s also the most similar to action classics like Hard Boiled, A Better Tomorrow, The Killer, and the others he built his reputation on. And now it’s getting a sequel.
According to Dutch website NU.NL (via Manly Movie), Roel Reine is going to direct Hard Target 2. If you hope that Van Damme will be back as Chance Boudreaux, don’t get your hopes up, but John Woo is reportedly on board as a producer, though the extent of his involvement remains to be seen. Maybe Yancy Butler will be back, she’s not doing anything better than this.
Whoever takes the lead, the plot revolves around rich folks sport hunting human prey, and this time it moves from New Orleans to the jungles between Burma and Thailand. Yes, this appears to be yet another cinematic update of “The Most Dangerous Game,” what did you expect?
While you may not know Reine, he has a long history helming this type of down and dirty, DTV-style action, especially when it involves follow-ups to bigger films. The Netherlands-borne director has some originals under his belt, like Steven Seagal’s Pistol Whipped, but the bulk of his resume is based on sequels. He directed things like The Marine 2, Death Race 2 and Death Race: Inferno, and The Scorpion King 3, among others. His most recent film was The Man with the Iron Fists 2, with The Condemned 2 on the way, so Hard Target 2 is right in his wheelhouse. With a solid, workmanlike approach, don’t expect any directorial pyrotechnics, but he’ll probably deliver exactly the movie you expect this to be.
“What an honor to work for one of your idols. Hard Target 2 should be an ode to the old films John Woo was in Hong Kong.”
Hard Target 2 is slated to shoot this October and November in Thailand. We’ll definitely be keeping an eye out for more news on this.