If you’re one of the many people who bemoan the current state of cinema where each and every movie gets remade, even if it’s only a few years old. Back in 2011, Gareth Evans’ The Raid kicked the action movie world in the face, and because American audiences are too lazy to read subtitles, an English-language remake has been in the works ever since. But, thankfully, it doesn’t look like it’s going to happen any time soon as it lost its director, star, and distributor.
According to the Tracking Board the American The Raid has lost Taylor Kitsch (Battleship), who was set to star. Patrick Hughes (The Expendables 3, Red Hill), who was on board to direct, has also walked away. And if that isn’t enough of a death blow to a production, Screen Gems, which was going to distribute the film, has stepped back, thrown up their hands, and said, “Naw, we’re not going to do that.”
So, while this may not be the final bell tolling for the death of The Raid USA, it’s certainly not good for producers XYZ Films.
The only good thing about The Raid remake was the involvement of Frank Grillo, who has picked up the grim, grizzled action star banner in recent years. He’s one of the few actors working on the fringes of the mainstream that could pull off the physicality necessary for the role, and idea of him being involved in a brutal story of a SWAT team trying to invade a high-rise slum ruled by a vicious drug lord is promising, no matter what.
The original introduced the world at large to the glory that is Iko Uwais, who is finally starting to get his due on the international stage, and features some of the greatest, craziest action sequences in recent memory. And even with Grillo in play, the remake was never going to hold a candle to the source.
For now The Raid remake appears to be in limbo, but hopefully it will die on the vine and Hollywood, for once, can leave well enough alone. That’s probably not going to happen, of course, but we can dream, right?