Shaft Reboot: Alexandra Shipp Cast as Female Lead

Son Of Shaft casts Alexandra Shipp as the female lead in the belated followup to Samuel L. Jackson's 2000 reboot of the character.

Alexandra Shipp X-Men Apocalypse

Son Of Shaft casts X-Men: Apocalypse co-star Alexandra Shipp in a lead role. The original Shaft from 1971 is considered a classic of the blaxploitation genre, thanks to the ice-cool performance by Richard Roundtree in the title role, and a super funky soundtrack by the late Isaac Hayes. The film’s surprise success led to two sequels – Shaft’s Big Score! and Shaft In Africa – and a short-lived CBS television series, which Roundtree has since expressed regret about appearing in.

Shaft received a high-profile sequel/reboot in 2000 starring Samuel L. Jackson as the lead character. The movie revealed Jackson’s character is actually the nephew of Roundtree’s Shaft, who reprised his role in a couple of scenes. The film also starred Christian Bale, Jeffrey Wright and Toni Collette, and while it wasn’t a huge hit, it scored decent reviews and made a tidy profit.

Related: Shaft Reboot Recruits Director Tim Story

It was recently announced that Independence Day: Resurgence's Jessie T. Usher will play the lead in Son Of Shaft, and now Jeff Sneider has confirmed Alexandra Shipp will play the female lead of the movie. Tim Story (Ride Along) will direct this belated sequel to the 2000 version, where Usher’s young Shaft is an FBI security expert who has to team with his father (Jackson again) on a case. Just like the previous movie, Roundtree will once again reprise his role as the original detective.

Samuel L. Jackson in the 2000 release 'Shaft'

It’s somewhat strange that Shaft 2000 is receiving a sequel now since that particular version has left little to no impact on popular culture. That said, Jackson's performance was easily the highlight so his return should at least ensure the new film will at least be fun. The decision to make Son Of Shaft something of a buddy comedy between father and son may have been inspired by the surprising success of Jackson’s The Hitman’s Bodyguard, another action comedy where the actor is partnered with a younger co-star for various misadventures.

Jackson’s decision to return may have also been motivated by his rumored disappointment with the previous Shaft movie. The actor is said to have had numerous disagreements with John Singleton and the producers over the direction of the film, which he feels impacted the film. Bale – who played the film’s smarmy villain Wade – is also said to have been disappointed with the final product, as his climactic fight scene with Jackson ended up being cut from the movie.

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There’s currently no release date set for Son Of Shaft, but we’ll keep you posted as more information comes in.

Source: Jeff Sneider

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