‘Naked Gun’ Reboot Casts Ed Helms as the New Frank Drebin

Published 1 year ago by

Naked Gun Reboot Movie Paramount 2014 Naked Gun Reboot Casts Ed Helms as the New Frank Drebin

There’s always some point during the year where I (and many others) find themselves re-watching late comedian Leslie Nielsen, Elvis’ ex-wife Priscilla Presley and a pre-homicidal O.J. Simpson all bringing the funny in the trilogy of Naked Gun movies released in the late ’80s and early ’90s. The police procedural spoofs began on the small screen with the short-lived Police Squad! TV show in the early ’80s, before being adapted into a series of films that represent the legendary Zucker Brothers (Airplane!) in their filmmaking prime (as in, before their Scary Movie 3 & 4 days).

Well, as is the case with most film properties, Paramount has decided to reboot The Naked Gun for a modern audience – and they’ve tapped none other than The Hangover and The Office star Ed Helms to step into Nielsen’s role as Lieutenant Frank Drebin.

Variety  has the exclusive about Helms’ casting in the film. The report also notes that Thomas Lennon and R. Ben Garant will be handling the script; the pair write and star in the cult-hit series Reno 911! and also scripted Night at the Museum and its sequel. If you can’t tell from the show itself – or the exclamation point in its title - Reno 911! carries many shades of the Zuckers’ work on Police Squad!, so having these two fellas make the jump to a Naked Gun reboot is both logical and promising.

No word yet on who will direct the project – though it’s not inconceivable that the Zuckers would come back for another go at the franchise. The brothers’ zany humor has always seemed somewhat misplaced within the once-raunchy world of the Scary Movie films – but their comedic stylings would be right at home in Naked Gun. Personally, though, I would prefer some new blood to step in and handle the franchise; the writing team is already strong, so finding a quality director shouldn’t be too hard for a project with this kind of visibility.

Ed Helms Naked Gun Reboot Frank Drebin Naked Gun Reboot Casts Ed Helms as the New Frank Drebin

Ed Helms

Helms certainly has his work cut out for him; not only will he be stepping into a iconic role once played by a master deadpan performer (a comedy style that seems at odds with the animated earnestness of Helms), he will also be leading a dated franchise into a new era where police procedurals (and their accompanying spoofs) are a dime a dozen.

Will audiences find the same kind of silly fun in a new Naked Gun as we once did back in the day? Will Helms try to imitate Drebin’s snowy-haired look? Will the legacy of Frank Drebin get sullied by this reboot? All questions that need answers.


We’ll keep you updated on the status of Naked Gun as news develops.

Source: Variety

Follow Kofi Outlaw on Twitter @ppnkof
TAGS: Naked gun
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  1. What the hell? o.O ?

  2. Should’ve been Liam Neeson.

    • DAMN RIGHT BLADE!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Why they need to reboot this too?

  4. No. This is dumb. Naked gun is perfect as is.

  5. Ugh. The Powers That Be are missing the whole point of what made these movies/Leslie Nielsen funny. Before hooking up with the ZAZ boys, he was a dramatic actor that moved from movies to broadcast TV, guest starring in just about every series ever made since they started shooting “In Color!” In these movies, he hilariously parodied his own acting career/style when playing a straight character in absolutely ridiculous situations. Hiring a comedic actor to play the role defeats the point. Paramount–its not too late! Here are some better suggestions: John Stamos (seriously,) Bryan Cranston (may be too successful at this point,) Tom Selleck, Mark Harmon (my favorite pick,) and Helen Mirren(!) And side note: Keep Jason Friedberg & Aaron Seltzer away from this project…far away.


  6. Up next is a Caddyshack reboot with Larry the Cable Guy as Rodney Dangerfield’s character.

    • I upchucked a little bit at this idea.

    • Don’t give them any ideas.

  7. This is just all shades of wrong. There was only one Leslie Neilsen. I would put him above even the legend that is Bill of King Murray when it came to absolute deadpan. The idea of a reboot is wrong. The casting is wrong and just frankly lazy and what we will end up with will be even worse than ‘Spy Hard’.

    On a slightly similar theme, Christian Bale would make a corking deadpan cop. ‘American Psycho’ was a masterclass of deadpan.

    “Oh Africa, Brave Africa. It was a laugh riot.”

  8. Nooooooooooooooooooo! (Revenge of the Sith style)

  9. This is going to be terrible.
    Just the mention of this brings back memories of the awful The Pink Panther with Steve Martin

  10. I’d love it if Uwe Boll got a chance at a big budget with this. It could work.

  11. Dear Santa,

    On my list of things I don’t want this year.

  12. Why not? Just get it right bub.

  13. Is nothing sacred?

    • Apparently not.

  14. Only if we get to see OJ Simpson, in a wheelchair going down the stairs of a stadium again….
    But it can’t capture Leslie Neilson deadpan delivery…

  15. My initial reaction was seething fanboy hate of all remakes, reimaginings, and reboots. Then I calmed down and thought, “maybe it can’t be that bad…”

    No. Ed Helms is a funny guy and the crew they’ve got writing this has promise but Nielsen was one of a kind and his rendition of the National Anthem is still my favorite. I don’t want to think it will be absolutely terrible or worse yet, just mediocre (why Oldboy remake? Why?), but it will be a pale imitation of its predecessor no matter how it turns out.

  16. Surely you can’t be serious!

    • Of course they are serious and dont call them Shirley

  17. Sure, the films after the first aren’t perfect, but there’s really no need to reboot the series.

  18. If they do a straight up reboot with Helms taking over the role that Leslie Nielson made famous, then no, but if they do something where it’s a sort of continuation, like he’s his son, then I can see it.

  19. Just make a TV show like the Naked Gun movies were supposed to be.

  20. Not really keen on this…

  21. What’s next a remake of National Lampoon’s Animal House starring Zach Galifianakis as Bluto?

  22. So the clever comedy of Naked Gun will be watered down to the stupid jokes we see in today’s movies that are not at all funny because they are too afraid o be politically incorrect…

  23. My first comment here. Just because this deserves it. Simply: NO.

  24. I’m usually not against remakes, but I think it’s official for me now…Hollywood has gone full retard.

  25. No. When will they ever stop?

  26. This is beyond unnecessary.

  27. ARGGGGG !! The best way to kill ANY movie is to cast ANYONE from ANY of the Hangover movies !! The original Naked Gun was fine, so try coming up with an ORIGINAL movie instead of remaking everything under the sun !!

  28. Steve Carell would have been my choice. Same leading man in ridiculous situations kind of humor about him.

  29. Or they could find out what David Rasche of Sledge Hammer fame has been doing all these years. His age would be about right now and Sledge Hammer was almost the same character.

    • Sledge Hammer was a lot of fun. Rasche was hilarious in the title role.