The black private dick who’s a sex machine to all the chicks is heading back to the big screen.
New Line has picked up the film rights to the Shaft franchise and have tasked producer John Davis with the work of bringing it into the 21st century. Davis produced the original Predator as well as the 2010 attempt to relaunch that franchise, Predators, which starred Adam Brody, and Guy Ritchie upcoming The Man From U.N.C.L.E. big screen adaptation with Henry Cavill.
No cast or creative personnel have been announced yet for the project.
The hardboiled detective character John Shaft first appeared in a series of novels by Ernest Tidyman before being adapted into the 1971 classic by director Gordon Parks with Richard Roundtree in a star-making turn in the title role. Backed by a funk score from Isaac Hayes, who won an Academy Award for his “Theme From Shaft,” the film was a hit with African-American audiences thrilled to see an African American in a lead role in a movie. That enthusiastic response lead to two sequels and a short-lived television series for the franchise and helped to spark the blaxploitation genre. In 2000, director John Singleton updated the character with Samuel L Jackson starring as the original Shaft’s nephew.
The Wrap’s report that now might be a good time to bring the character back, “at a time when the country is fraught with racial tension,” and I can’t say that I disagree with that. Will Davis and whomever he hires to work on the film look to incorporate that thematically into the film? It seems like a no-brainer to me.
Can ya dig it?
(Here’s the original films’ trailer which is now a little NSFW.0