John Carpenter’s Escape from New York is a classic and deservedly so (we won’t mention Escape from LA). Kurt Russell as Snake Plissken is one of cinema’s greatest antiheroes. It is one of those films that still stands up today and you would be hard pressed to capture that kind of magic again.
Of course that means nothing to Hollywood who have been trying to get it remade for a few years now. Len Wiseman was set to direct it and Gerard Butler was rumoured to star as Snake. Things moved on and creative differences meant they were no longer attached and a workable script just didn’t seem to be possible. Everything put forward was just too expensive for the studios. John Carpenter also had a contract drawn up saying that in any remake the main character had to only be called Snake, always wear an eye patch, and, “always be a ‘bad-ass.” John Carpenter is always cool.
Scripts for the remake could never capture the essential bad-assedness needed for Snake. Until now.
Now Vulture have the news that writer Allen Loeb (Wall Street 2) has written a script has Snake Plissken as a bad-ass and is cheap enough for the studios.
Loeb nailed the humour in Plissken without slipping into camp, and he changed Snake’s rescue-mission target from a president to a female senator, thereby upping the banter quotient. But just as big a factor was economic: They found a much cheaper way to turn Manhattan into a giant prison.
This cheaper way was to keep the city in one piece, but the population evacuated.
This Manhattan was evacuated and turned into a privately run penal colony after the detonation of a crude radioactive dirty bomb on the outskirts of the city. “It is not a disaster movie,” says a source close to the project. “It is an exposé of an ecosystem, if you put a huge wall around Manhattan and then dropped in the most fucked-up, dangerous criminals on Earth.” This means New York will still be recognizable to audiences, à la I Am Legend, rather than an entirely new Armageddon Island.
Whack a great big wall around the place (CGI could take care of this) and there is your prison. I am not sure about changing the President to a female senator. Going to rescue the President (Donald Pleasance in the original) straight away told you how big a deal the mission was.
Like in the original movie, the authorities have set up shop in the Statue of Liberty (though this time it’s not the police, it’s a private, KBR-like security company), and now new prisoners are being processed through Ellis Island.
At least it sounds as if they have put a bit of thought into it all. Yet, it could so easily be terrible.
There is still no need for a remake, but it looks as if it is going to happen. Therefore, who should direct it, but more importantly, who has the balls to play Snake?
I recently posted a review of The Thing for my 31 Days of Horror. I mentioned there how much I loved that film and I am a big John Carpenter fan.
STYD spoke to Amber Heard (Zombieland, All the Boys Love Mandy Lane, The Rum Diary) and they brought up the new John Carpenter film, The Ward.
“I think it’s awesome,” she enthused. “John is a legend and rightfully so. I love that I got to work with him.”
Heard co-stars alongside Danielle Panabaker and Jared Harris in what is Carpenter’s first feature film since Ghosts of Mars. “My character is arrested and thrown into an institution in the ’60s,” she explains of the supernatural thriller. “She meets all of these other characters and things start happening in the institution. You have to second-guess your main character, me, because she is in a mental institution. There are a lot of things that are coming in and out of the story and you don’t know what to think. It’s pretty intense. The film’s in post-production and it will hopefully honor the script, but it was fantastic and a thrilling story.”
Really excited about a new John Carpenter film. The Thing is genius, Halloween superb, Escape from New York is brilliant, They Live best fight scene ever, Starman, Big Trouble in Little China, Ghosts of Mars….moving on.
I just hope JC has got his mojo back and we get some of the greatness we used to love.
Kurt Russell is always cool in my book – Escape from New York, The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China, Tombstone and many more – he is cool and knows how to kick ass.
ComingSoon.net exclusively learned today at the San Diego Comic-Con that Kurt Russell is talks to star in Red Dawn, the MGM remake scheduled for a September 24, 2010 release.
To be directed by Dan Bradley, the war film’s cast includes Chris Hemsworth (Star Trek, upcoming Thor), Josh Peck and Adrianne Palicki (upcoming Legion).
The original Red Dawn was the Cold War brainchild of writer-director John Milius, who devised a World War III invasion of America by the Soviets and Cubans. The film followed the scrappy insurgency of a group of Midwestern teenagers who take on their high school mascot name — “Wolverines!” — as a rallying cry of resistance.
I wasn’t that bothered about this remake, but now that Russell may be involved it suddenly got interesting. We just have to find out what role he will be playing. I wonder if he will be leader of the bad guys?
Now some word has come from the Stallone Zone about what Kurt Russell (Snake Plissken, R J MacReady, Elvis Presley, Jack Burton, Captain Ron, Elvis Presley, Cash, Wyatt Earp and Stuntman Mike) has said about the possibility of starring in the film. Will Tango and Cash be reunited?
I know that many people on the site have asked for Kurt Russell. I asked for him too. Actually, I was taken aback when asked to put the request in a letter and send it to his agent. Subsequently, I was called back by the agent several days later after refusing to send a letter and he said Kurt Russell is not interested in ‘ensemble acting’ at this time.
Just spotted these over on Twitch. Two new Alamo posters for John Carpenter’s Escape From New York and Brian De Palma’s Carrie.
The Escape poster is by comic book artist and lead animator on The Scanner Darkly Nick Derington. The poster, which is based on an old French Fantomas poster, captures the characters perfectly and should please fans of The Russell and Carpenter’s classic. The poster is 5 color (including a split fountain) 24×36, printed on specialty crème paper, signed and numbered.
Methane Studios have truly created a masterpiece with this striking Carrie poster. This is a 2 color 25×36 piece with a clear varnish overlay and comes individually numbered.
This is so cool. “Eee Wants!” as my almost two year old daughter says.
Hope For a Better tomorrow t-shirt is available on Dutch Southern. The shirt features three retro future heros, Mel Gibson from Mad Max (The Road Warrior), Charlton Heston from Planet of the Apes, and Kurt Russell as Snake Plissken from Escape From New York.
No way. First Bernie Mac and now Isaac Hayes. He was found dead in Memphis over the weekend, and police are currently working to determine the cause of death. According to a CNN report, he was found in his home, unconscious, next to a treadmill, and no foul play is suspected. Hayes was 65 years old.
Writer of one of the greatest theme tunes of all time, Shaft and a great actor. Starred in the Rockford Files, Hunter, the voice of Chef in South Park, he was the goddamn Duke in Escape from New York and he was in a load of other stuff.