Despite a busy schedule it looks like tough-guy actor Jason Statham could soon be seen in another upcoming action/thriller, as he is reportedly in negotiations to play the lead in the film Killer’s Game. The movie is based on one of Hollywood’s oldest unproduced scripts, and will be directed by D.J. Caruso, who most recently helmed xXx: The Return of Xander Cage.
Statham has a high profile with film studios at the moment. After the financial success of The Fate of the Furious, his character (Deckard Shaw) is due to team-up with Dwayne Johnson’s Luke Hobbs for the Untitled Fast and Furious Spinoff, which is currently scheduled for release next year. The actor will also be seen in the upcoming giant-shark movie The Meg, and is still apparently attached to the Netflix Layer Cake sequel series Viva La Madness. A recent social media post from Sylvester Stallone suggested that he may return to The Expendables franchise as well.
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In addition to all that, THR is now reporting that Statham is in talks to star in Killer’s Game. The project itself has a pretty remarkable lifespan and history. The existing script is based on a Jay Bonansinga novel which was published in 1997. It tells the story of hitman Joe Flood, who only assassinates those he believes deserve to die. When he is diagnosed with a terminal condition, he takes out a contract on his own life rather than suffer a slow end. But of course, the diagnosis turns out to be a mistake and he has to fight off his former colleagues who try to kill him. The movie rights for the book were bought at once, but it has remained in development hell ever since. Writer Simon Kinberg (X-Men: Dark Phoenix) worked on the most recent version of the script.
A strong roster of directors and stars have been attached to the production at several stages over the years, including John Woo, Renny Harlin, and Alex Proyas. Actors Michael Keaton and Wesley Snipes were also tapped to star at certain points. Although Caruso’s xXx sequel wasn’t exactly received well by the critics, it grossed over $346M at the global box-office from an $85M budget. It proved that he could handle complicated action sequences, and Caruso was previously attached to G.I. Joe 3. He also helmed the thrillers Disturbia and Eagle Eye. If Statham is confirmed for the role of Flood, it would obviously be a very sturdy choice for the action-based film.
Interestingly this production update of Killer’s Game could be indicative of a new trend within Hollywood. Although the ongoing obsession for reboots and remakes of old properties still exists, this announcement and the progress of Will Smith’s Gemini Man – which was also in development for over 20 years – could point to the fact that studios are looking at older scripts; ones that either exist on the famous ‘Black List’ of unmade projects, or just those that have been left in movie purgatory until now. At any rate, if Statham takes the role we could well be looking at another enjoyable action-movie on the horizon.
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There is currently no release date for Killer’s Game. We’ll bring you more information as we get it.