‘Escape From New York’ Reboot Trilogy Coming; Starting With a Prequel

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Escape From New York Reboot Prequel Escape From New York Reboot Trilogy Coming; Starting With a Prequel

Rumors and plans for an Escape From New York reboot have been circling for years, but today it seems like the first steps of a more motivated production are being taken. After the planned remake of John Carpenter’s Escape From New York (1981) went through numerous directors and scriptwriters since news of the remake from New Line first broke, the rights have since lapsed, meaning all bets were off.

Today Joel Silver’s Silver Pictures has announced they’ll be teaming up with Studio Canal to make the second trip to an incarcerated Manhattan a reality, but taking a very different direction than a simple retread.

With a post-apocalyptic future setting, a grizzled, eye-patched leading man, and plenty of gunfights and brawls, it was never hard to see how a rebooted Escape From New York would fit with current sci-fi movies. But according to Deadline, Silver plans to build a trilogy of films around the property, beginning with a prequel presumably telling the story that led to the original film. The strategy worked for Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011), and the studio seems to be following that film’s lead-in – giving Carpenter’s a similar second wind.

Escape From New York Snake Plissken Escape From New York Reboot Trilogy Coming; Starting With a Prequel

The idea of focusing more on a prequel than a remake isn’t a total shock, since reports of the previous Allan Loeb-modified script were less ‘disaster movie,’ and more “an exposé of an ecosystem.” In other words, a more modern look at what would actually happen if the island of Manhattan was walled off, and populated with America’s worst criminals. Granted, that might not be what fans of the original hope for, but it’s at least something original.

The question fans will now ask is: will a prequel follow the star of the original, Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell) before he fell from war hero to criminal, or save his re-casting for the retelling of Escape‘s plot (assuming that’s planned in a future film)? It would be an odd choice to attempt a reboot of an iconic B-movie classic without its most famous character, but it’s not an exaggeration to say that much of this trilogy’s success could rest on its leading man.

So far the likes of Gerard Butler (who bowed out citing ‘creative differences‘), Jeremy Renner (whose reps claim was never offered the part), Timothy Olyphant and even Tom Hardy (busy walking in the boots of another cult icon, Mad Max) were all in contention for the role of Plissken. While they may be established names garnering attention at the moment, more than just skills or star power will have to be weighed before casting.

Escape From New York Remake Actors Escape From New York Reboot Trilogy Coming; Starting With a Prequel

Given how much trouble the production has seen so far, and the ongoing question as to why a film defined by its distrust of Nixon’s presidency and leading man needs to be remade without either, the new star will be taking a bit of a risk. Add the fact that Kurt Russell thinks the role should be played by an American, and the most devoted fans of the original may be turned off.

Whatever Silver and Studio Canal have planned, Breck Eisner – the last director attached to the reboot – maintains that a modern Escape From New York could say something important. A prequel is certainly more interesting at this point than a straightforward remake, but for now, we’ll wait until we hear a more detailed plan than what Silver Pictures ‘hopes’ to achieve.

What is your initial reaction to hearing about a trilogy of films set in Carpenter’s post-WWIII America? Are you more intrigued by a chance to tell a new story, or do you still maintain that Escape From New York is one movie that shouldn’t be remade? Sound off in the comments.

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Follow Andrew on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

Source: Deadline

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TAGS: escape from new york

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  1. Back at the time Kurt Russel was pretty much a Disney child actor and nobody could picture him as any kind of tough guy. It was different back then too. It was hard for actors to escape public perception. Nowadays it’s more common for actors to play all types of roles and the public doesn’t mind. So you never know what an actor can do.

    I don’t like the idea of a prequel. Part of what is enjoyable about the first movie is how there is a heavy sense of past events. Multiple characters would say, “Snake Plisken. I heard you were dead.” I expect they’ll mess it up.

    • Yeah, the whole point of lines like that were that the audience DIDN’T know what they meant. Oh well.

  2. Metal Gear Solid… anyone?

  3. To me, this is almost like recasting the T-800 for a Terminator reboot, or John Rambo for a Rambo reboot.
    However, I think Paul Rudd would be an excellent Snake. Kind of looks like Russel too. He’s a diverse actor and is definately popular enough to take on the leading man role of a big franchise.
    If they go with someone like Vin Diesel or The Rock I’m outta here.

    • Paul Rudd?

      I don’t see the loner Snake as much of a bromance kind of guy.

    • There is NO OTHER Snake!!!! Period!!!!

  4. after careful fantasy casting..a choice amongst me and my friends..karl urban as snake…as long as they dont go with ryan reynolds im cool with that..james cromwell as the president,gary oldman as brains,stephen lang as bob hawke…a trilogy..even better..we might might see the gulf fire over leningrad,and an expanded heist,we saw a glimpse of in the deleted scenes on the dvd of the original…

    • yeah Karl Urban i agree would be good.

  5. its a classic! I wouldn’t mind a remake of they can do it justice. Kurt Russell it’s the man though. I don’t know if any of the current stars can play him. They may need to go in a different direction. but that’s not bad if they do it right

  6. love the thought of karl urban as mentioned and also olyphant would be a great choice…i love the original so much but carpenter already did a pile of crap with L.A so a remake/trilogy wouldnt bother me at all

  7. Escape from Remake-3D-Tom Cruise thinks he can be intimdating-Michael Bay Inducing hearing loss-Movies.

    Yeah, that is something, we have to escape from the current formula of movies.

    I feel at times, I am held hostage and must escape!

  8. Will Smith will be SNAKE PLISKIN. Will is still pissed he turned down NEO in the Matrix!!

  9. Jeremy Renner for Snake!

  10. Who thinks this is a good idea? WHO? Can we not just make a separate badass? Do we really have to see how Snake loses his eye? This will join the Red Dawn remake of being one of only two films I have sworn never to see.

    • AMEN! Preach it, Brother!

  11. Dammit, when will hollywood grow a freaking imagination and quit remaking, rebooting, er, stealing old ideas? This is freaking ridiculous!! Leave the old, great stuff alone and TRY to come up with new ideas. IDIOTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. I say get Carpenter to direct it. As for Plissken, TAYLOR KITSCH can handle this. Watched Big Trouble In Little China last night and me and my hubby agreed that Kitsch would have been able to handle a reboot of that. Like Russell, he’s just the right about of goofy and machismo. He looks like the character trope itself. Watched Battleship yesterday and I could totally see it. He was John Carter as well.

  13. Another Remake & Reboot…

  14. Although I don’t really hate reboots (I quite liked The Amazing Spider-Man), I don’t really see the point in this. I think that the films stand up quite well despite their age. And now I feel old.

  15. NONONONONONONONONONONONONONONO……..

  16. The real question is…..Who’s going to replace Borginine as the cabbie? You all thought Russel was the main character when clearly he’d never made it without old Ernie

    • Christopher Lloyd ?

  17. Nick Cage would be my choice!!!

  18. I hate that people can’t leave movies alone. It’s either prequels or reboots. They can’t just make anything new. It’s because all the imagination and ideas are gone now. Or it’s because of all the retro-wannabes who weren’t born at the time these movies were new wanting to be in on something. Usually these reboots, prequels, sequels, suck hard.

  19. Josh Brolin