Is a new film version of a book that has already been cinematically adapted before a remake of that film? I suppose the answer would lie in how close the previous movie version is to the original source novel. And fans of the Death Wish series of films that starred Charles Bronsan and/or the novel that spawned the franchise will get to wrestle with that question soon.
According to a news report from Deadline, Bruce Willis will be headlining a new screen iteration being co-developed by Paramount and MGM. Willis will be joining Big Bad Wolves directors Aharon Keshales & Navot Papushado. Previously, both Joe Carnahan and Gerardo Naranjo had been attached to direct.
While it has been years since I have seen the original, I have to wonder if Willis is the way to go. Sure, he is a proven action star, but that’s sort of against the point of the original Death Wish film. In it, a mild-mannered architect is driven to pick up a gun for the first time. That is something that looses its impact when the audience is asked to believe that Willis is that person. The better, more interesting choice would be an actor who isn’t already connected with various action films, who maybe hasn’t been seen holding a gun on screen previously at all. It would make the role a much more complex one, for both the actor and the audience. Off the top of my head, I think I would rather see someone like David Hyde Pierce – Yes, the star of Frasier – in the role rather than Willis. Not that I don’t like Willis as an action star, but because I would rather see the an actor who would better serve the material.