It seemed like Snake Plissken was safe for a while there, but not now. For a couple of years, Escape From New York was rumored to be remade, with both Len Wiseman and Breck Eisner attached as a director, and Gerard Butler (who was attached to a great many projects post 300) set to star. None of that happened. But now there’s new producers attached. Oh boy.
The good news about this (which comes from Deadline) is that Joel Silver, along with Studio Canal, is developing it, and Joel Silver was the king of action in the 1980′s. Seriously, he produced Lethal Weapon, Predator and Die Hard. The bad news: They’re developing it as a trilogy, with the first chapter an origin story. Which goes against everything that’s great about the first film.
In the 1981 original, director John Carpenter cut a scene before Kurt Russell‘s arrival in New York because he knew that it slowed the movie down. The film is about the event: In the future (1997), the President’s plane crash lands in New York, which has been turned into a maximum security prison/hell hole. With the president required to deliver a peace treaty in twenty four hours, they use Snake Plissken, a former soldier turned criminal, because he’s their only viable option for infiltration, and his reward is a pardon.
What’s been lost more recently in mainstream movies is the sense of events over people. Snake Plissken is not the ideal choice, but he’s all they’ve got. In Die Hard, John McClane is just dealing with the situation. The best recent example is probably Attack the Block. By building a trilogy around the character, they will be robbing what made the character interesting. Audiences may hate or love Snake Plisken, however they feel about him, it doesn’t change what makes the movie interesting. We shall see. Deadline suggests Butler, Tom Hardy, Jeremy Renner and Liam Neeson are in contention for the new Snake.
Who would you like to see put on the eyepatch?