A Lethal Weapon TV series has been hotly discussed ever since it was first announced over a year ago. Since then, it’s undergone development, casting in the form of Damon Wayans Sr. and Clayne Crawford, and is set to hit the small screen in the near future – in fact, it’s only recently had a series officially ordered by Fox, so will be heading to the U.S. with a McG-helmed pilot. And with a renewed interest in the original 1987 buddy cop movie continuing, there remain murmurs regarding a fifth Lethal Weapon movie, even though the idea was ruled out almost seven years ago by a Warner Bros. source. Some five years ago talk again emerged about the idea of a reboot, which likely then materialized into the TV show on its way that would not include its original, iconic acting duo Danny Glover and Mel Gibson.
Cue the beating heart of the Lethal Weapon franchise – the first and second film’s writer, Shane Black – revealing his intent for a fifth movie and what exactly it’d entail.
With Black doing the publicity rounds for his latest movie, The Nice Guys, starring Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe, it’s an ideal time for any Lethal Weapon discussion to emerge, and while speaking to The Playlist, he was eager to share his idea for a brand new instalment. “I wrote a 62-page treatment with my friend Chuck for Lethal Weapon 5 that would’ve been, I think, a very good movie,” Black revealed.
“It was interesting. It was essentially an older Riggs and Murtaugh in New York City during the worst blizzard in east coast history, fighting a team of expert Blackwater guys from Afghanistan that’s smuggling antiquities. And we had a young character that actually counter-pointed them. But I didn’t wanna do what people do when they’re trying to transition which is, they sorta put the two older guys in the movie, but really it’s about their son! And he’s gonna take over and we’re gonna do a spinoff. F**k that, if they’re gonna be in the movie, they’re gonna be in the movie — I don’t care how old they are.”
There’s no question that if Black had penned a new sequel to the hugely successful franchise, it would’ve been a strong and inventive screenplay, especially if his other work is anything to go by: not only did he write and direct 2005 comedy-crime caper Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, but did the same for Marvel’s 2013 hit Iron Man 3, which made over $1 billion at the box office.
And with his latest movie – a spiritual successor of sorts to Kiss Kiss Bang Bang – Black clearly has a talent for writing, so the prospect of him having come up with an idea for Lethal Weapon 5 feels like a gift the world needs to see, especially with our heroes older and (hopefully) wiser – although that approach didn’t quite work for John McClane (Bruce Willis), did it.
With numerous films and TV shows being rebooted in the age of reimaginings, there’s every chance we may see another in the franchise, even though it has previously been ruled out. Who would’ve thought 10 years ago that TV’s 21 Jump Street would’ve been made into two hugely popular movies, with a third – a Men In Black crossover, no less – on the way? Seeing an older, present day Riggs and Murtaugh would indeed be an intriguing prospect, regardless of Gibson and Glover being 60 and 69, respectively – just look at the impact Harrison Ford (now 73) had in last year’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Lethal Weapon will air Wednesdays at 10pm EST as part of the Fall 2016 line up on FOX.
Source: The Playlist