One of my favorite movies of all-time is getting remade, and I’m not even upset about it. Edgar Wright is set to direct a new adaptation of Stephen King’s dystopian novel The Running Man, which had previously been made into a 1987 movie starring Arnold Schwarzenegger. Wright has long said if he could do a remake of anything it would be this movie and now he’s getting his shot.
The Running Man.
— edgarwright (@edgarwright) May 12, 2017
The Running Man will be directed by Wright, who will help develop the story with screenwriter Michael Bacall, who he previously worked with on Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. Their plan is to be more faithful to the source material than the previous movie was. Simon Kinberg, best known for his work on the X-Men films, is a producer and brought this idea to Paramount, who told him to run with it. The project is now a priority at the studio, so expect Wright to jump into it fairly soon
King’s book, which he wrote under his Richard Bachman pseudonym, takes place in an economically-depressed future, where a blacklisted man named Ben Richards applies to be part of a game show where contestants are free to go anywhere in the world, but are chased by “Hunters” employed to kill them.
The 1987 movie was a very loose adaptation, and featured Schwarzenegger as a cop falsely-accused of mass murder (the opening helicopter scene is pretty incredible), and is forced to take part in The Running Man game show, where he and a handful of others are tracked by Hunters in elaborate costumes. Also in the film were Yaphet Kotto, Jesse Venture, Jim Brown, Richard Dawson, and Maria Conchita Alonso.
Normally, a remake of The Running Man would really grind my gears but I can’t complain about Wright, a true fan, being involved. I’m hoping to do the original as part of my Reel Action series at some point soon, if only so I can give some love to the crazy Hunters like Dynamo, Fireball, and Sub-Zero!
Wright is coming off positive buzz from Sundance for his music doc The Sparks Brothers. Next up for him is psychological thriller Last Night in Soho, while he has a number of other projects in development, including The Chain, Set My Heart to Five, and possibly a Baby Driver sequel.