Michael Keaton Joins ‘Need for Speed’ Video Game Adaptation

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michael keaton need for speed Michael Keaton Joins Need for Speed Video Game Adaptation

Fast & Furious 6 may conclude Vin Diesel and Paul Walker’s run on the franchise, setting the stage for either a reboot or further re-invention of the car-racing series down the line (e.g. a semi-complete overhaul, a la Transformers 4). However, in the meantime, DreamWorks will attempt to fill the demand for illegal racing thrills and machismo drivers with the EA video game adaptation Need for Speed.

The project has Aaron Paul (Breaking Bad) and Dominic Cooper (Captain America, Dead Man Down) playing the leads, with the supporting players including Imogen Poots (Fright Night), Rami Malek (Breaking Dawn – Part 2) and actor/musician Kid Cudi. We can now confirm that old-timer fan-favorite Michael Keaton is joining that crew of young talent and up-and-comers.

Need for Speed arrives in 2014, marking the 20th anniversary of the original video game property (which now boasts over 18 installments). The games started out as track race competitions combined with open stages that include traffic and cops as obstacles, but the focus eventually shifted more onto illegal street racing elements – set in dangerous urban environments, where the police are ‘the enemies’ – that are equivalent to playable versions of the Fast and the Furious movies. Hence, comparisons between the two are near-impossible to avoid.

Here is a synopsis for the Need for Speed movie (via Heat Vision):

The story tells of a local street-racer (Paul) who partners with a rich and arrogant business associate (Cooper), only to find himself framed by his colleague and sent to prison. After his stint in the joint, he joins a New York-to-Los Angeles race to get revenge. But when the ex-partner learns of the scheme, he puts a massive bounty on the racer’s head, forcing him to run a cross-country gauntlet of illegal racers in all manner of supercharged vehicles.

Keaton is playing “the reclusive and eccentric host of an underground supercar race where he invites the best drivers from around the world.” For those who are too young to remember: he’s the star of Tim Burton’s Batman movies and Beetlejuice, in addition to supporting player in famous ’90s titles like Kenneth Branagh’s Much Ado About Nothing and Jack Frost Quentin Tarantino’s Jackie Brown. The actor’s kept busy voicing Ken in Toy Story shorts over the past year (and Jason Hudson in Call of Duty: Black Ops II), but will appear onscreen in both Need for Speed and the RoboCop reboot in 2014.

Michael Keatons Batman Begins Origin Film Michael Keaton Joins Need for Speed Video Game Adaptation

Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne in ‘Batman Returns’ 

George Gatins is scripting Need for Speed, drawing from a story he conceived with his Oscar-nominated screenwriter brother John Gatins (Flight). Director Scott Waugh is a stunt coordinator with over two decades of experience; he transitioned into directing with last year’s Navy SEAL action-thriller Act of Valor. Meanwhile, producing responsibilities are assigned to J. Gatins and Mark Sourian, working alongside executive producer John Brooks Klingenbeck (Lawless, Warm Bodies).

That’s to say: there’s solid talent working on both sides of the camera, boding well for the Need for Speed adaptation. Whether or not that translates into replicating the box office success of Fast and the Furious, is another matter.

Need for Speed races into theaters on February 7th, 2014.

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Source: THR

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  1. “NOW YOU WANNA DRIVE FAST?! C’mon, LETS DRIVE FAST!”

    Sorry, had to xD

  2. I thought Justin Lin had signed on to do Fast 7 as well. A Need for Speed Film could be good but they need to make it distinct from Fast and the Furious.

    • As long as they as a street racing movie, I think people would know the differences.

  3. The very first Need for Speed game wasn’t revolving around “basic track competitions” at all. It was about illegal racing on open roads with civilian traffic and cops.

    • I own two Need for speed games for the PS1 and they are pretty much just basic track competitions. Neither of those are the first one though.

      • Yeah, the series devolved a bit once or twice.

        I must correct myself: although The Need for Speed from 1994 already did have open stages with traffic and cops it also featured closed circuits.

        • My bad, I changed that paragraph accordingly.

          Thanks.

  4. Excellent news. Keaton is a great actor.

    • While this may be “good” news to you, I’m not looking forward to another Racing game or Racing type film based on street racing after the failure of R.E.D. or whatever that Racing film with “LUDA”, “starring”.

      I can’t believe they’re actually going forward with an adaptation of a game that is already in 6 f*cking films already.

      So much for wish-ful thinking that Wonder Woman or any other DC character will be made.

      I’ve lost all faith in these studios, except for Marvel’s camp.

      Bad news. but I do enjoy Keaton.

      • It’s excellent news because Keaton is going to be in another movie.

  5. Moviegoers are going to have a hard time on which film to see that has Michael Keaton in it(Robocop reboot or the Need for Speed adaptation).

    • Nah, people can just see both.

      • or you can not see this film because why would they make a movie that was already made a couple (EIGHT TO TEN) times over already?

        No hope.

        • Why are you so butt hurt by this movie? Get over it.

    • Only Batman fans care about Keaton nowadays. :)

      • Fans of good actors care about Keaton.

  6. I liked this movie the first time I saw it…when it was called Cannonball Run. I mean c’mon:

    “After his stint in the joint, he joins a New York-to-Los Angeles race to get revenge…. forcing him to run a cross-country gauntlet of illegal racers in all manner of supercharged vehicles.”

    Yeah, Burt Reynolds already did that.

    • Hahaha oh yeah!!

      That could be quite fun if they played it for laughs, the cast is pretty awesome tho, I’d watch Aarron Paul in anything and Keaton is a legend

      • I believe they’re remaking Cannonball Run.

        Keaton is a legend and one “old timer” who is always worth watching. Glad to see him attached to new projects.

  7. hmm not bad casting

  8. Cannonball Run was good and this sounds just like it. It also sounds just like “The Run” that need for speed did. I’d rather them base this off of the Need For Speed Underground games or a combination of Carbon and Most Wanted. Doing something off of the Carbon game would be better. That one is where you race other crews for control of the city.