Director John Carpenter made so many great films in the ’70s and ’80s, and one his most beloved to this day is Escape from New York. Starring Kurt Russell as anti-hero Snake Plissken, the film took place in a dystopian future where a crime-infested Manhattan was walled off and transformed into a high-security prison. After the president crash-lands there, Snake must go in and retrieve him within 24 hours. Why 24 hours? Because that’s when the explosives in Snake’s arteries will explode.
The high concept nature of the film is so great – it was even borrowed, more or less, for the video game Batman: Arkham City – that Hollywood has tried to remake the film several times over for the past eight years. Various actors have either been attached or sought for the role (including Gerard Butler, Jeremy Renner, Timothy Olyphant, and Jason Statham), and a number of directors have come and gone (Len Wiseman and Breck Eisner, for example).
But for whatever reason, development on the film just keeps falling apart before anything substantial can happen. Now, in a highly competitive bid war, Fox has apparently secured the rights to remake Escape from New York and is moving forward with its development.
According to Deadline, there’s currently no script for the remake, and the filmmakers will be “starting from scratch.” So we can probably assume that all that previous talk about a prequels and/or trilogies is out the window. Also: John Carpenter will be involved as an executive producer “and will exert creative influence over the project.”
In full disclosure, I’m not fond of the idea of Escape from New York getting remade at all. We’ve seen a number of John Carpenter movie remakes over the years – Halloween, The Thing (yeah, sure, it was a “prequel”), Assault on Precinct 13, and The Fog – and for my money, they’re just not worth the effort.
Having said that, if Escape from New York must be remade, at least we can take solace in the fact that John Carpenter will have some involvement beyond an honorary producer role. How much involvement he’ll have remains to be seen, of course, and it’s not as though Carpenter has been making great films these past few years. Still, if he’s okay with Escape getting a remake, who are we to stand in its way?
As for who might play Snake – one of the greatest American anti-heroes of all time – my preference would be Banshee star Antony Starr. Now, I have no idea if he could pull of Snake’s voluptuous locks (which are incredibly important, mind you), but he absolutely has a handle on certain aspects of his cynical personality.
What say you, Screen Ranters? Do you want to see an Escape from New York remake? Or should Hollywood leave well enough alone? Drop us a line in the comments.
Stay tuned to Screen Rant for more news on Escape from New York.