Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is currently in negotiations to star in a remake of John Carpenter’s 1986 cult classic Big Trouble in Little China. The screenplay for the film will be written by Ashley Miller and Zack Stentz, whose previous co-writing credits include X-Men: First Class, Thor, and, of course, Agent Cody Banks.
I would love to see The Rock in a remake of Agent Cody Banks, by the way.
The Rock’s career outside of wrestling is weird. Despite his natural charisma and general affability, The Rock has yet to be the lead in a great action movie that plays to his talents a la Schwarzenegger and Stallone. He’s just coming off of the ho-hum disaster movie San Andreas and prepping to play Black Adam for the forthcoming Shazam movie. His best work in the action genre is as a supporting player in the Fast and the Furious series.
In an odd way, Big Trouble in Little China might be ideal for The Rock if they stick with the format of the original film. Consider how Kurt Russell played the lead character Jack Burton.
Jack talked big and acted macho, but he was a total putz when it came to heroism. All swagger, not much step. Ol’ Jack Burton was comic relief, the film’s lead character as second banana to the real hero of the movie, Wang Chi (Dennis Dun). The inversion is why the movie worked so well. Russell played against type and was totally out of his element while crazy-ass 80s Hong Kong magic happened around him. (One of the inspirations for Big Trouble in Little China was Tsui Hark’s 1983 Hong Kong film Zu Warriors from Magic Mountain.)
As long as Miller and Stentz keep the formula in mind and consider how it can be played with, we might get The Rock acting against type and delivering some goofy dialogue reminiscent of his finer wrestling promos. Meanwhile, as The Rock’s waffling like a candy ass jabroni, Wang Chi can be a major on-screen badass.
Still, The Rock better do a People’s Elbow on Lo Pan.
The question now: who’s going to be the remake’s Wang Chi? There’s no real young superstar in Chinese martial arts cinema I can think of. Maybe Wu Jing gets a call to help out The Rock?[via The Wrap]