It seems that director Antoine Fuqua’s proposed remake of “The Magnificent Seven” is getting a serious dose of star power: Denzel Washington is reportedly interested in taking the lead.
Schmoes Know writes that Washington has been offered the starring role in the remake ofde the classic western, and his ties to Fuqua — the pair worked together on “Training Day,” which nabbed Washington an Oscar, and are currently collaborating on the TV adaptation flick “The Equalizer” — may draw him in.
The original “Magnificent Seven” debuted in 1960, and was a loose remake of Akira Kurowsawa’s iconic film, “Seven Samurai.” It starred Steve McQueen, Charles Bronson, James Coburn, Yul Brynner, Robert Vaughn, Brad Dexter, and Horst Buchholz as the titular seven American gunmen.
Fuqua reportedly chose “Seven” over several other high-profile projects (including a possible sequel to “The Equalizer,” which has been testing well in the months before its release), so it seems he’s confident he can secure his chosen star and get this reboot made once and for all. We’ll see whether Washington makes it official.
via: Schmoes Know, h/t CinemaBlend
Gallery | 9 Amazing American Remakes of Foreign Movies
- ‘La Cage aux Folles’ (France, 1978)
- ‘The Birdcage’ (1996)
Directed by Mike Nichols, “The Birdcage” holds up nicely next to its French counterpart, turning out unforgettable performances from stars Robin Williams and Nathan Lane. Originally a 1973 play by Jean Poiret, the story revolves around the a gay couple, Armand and Albert (Williams and Lane), whose lives are turned upside-down when they pose as straight to appease Armand’s son’s (Dan Futterman) soon to be in-laws. Also, in the American version, the fiancée’s (Calista Flockhart) uptight, right-wing parents are portrayed by Oscar winners Gene Hackman and Dianne Wiest.
- ‘Infernal Affairs’ (China, 2002)
- ‘The Departed’ (2006)
Arguably one of Martin Scorsese’s best films, “The Departed” earned four Oscars — including Scorsese’s one-and-only Academy Award — and lit up the box office, but its stellar story is actually taken from one of the best Chinese films in recent memory, “Infernal Affairs.” The original is more stylish and action-focused — and running at roughly 90 minutes, it leaves little room for character development. But take that compelling undercover story, put Oscar-winning scribe William Monahan to work, place Scorsese behind the camera, and toss in Jack Nicholson, Matt Damon, and Leonardo DiCaprio, and you have a modern-day classic.
- ‘Seven Samurai’ (Japan, 1954)
- ‘The Magnificent Seven’ (1960)
Based on Akira Kurosawa’s 1954 masterpiece “Seven Samurai,” the classic Western was made just six short years after its Japanese predecessor, and follows the original’s muscle-for-hire plot fairly closely. The one big difference, of course, is that Kurosawa’s movie is set in feudal Japan while director John Sturges’s is set Mexico and follows seven gunslingers hired to protect a rural village from marauding bandits. While “Magnificent” was deemed pretentious and met with mixed reviews upon its release in 1960, it has slowly gained following in large part due to its truly magnificent cast, including Yul Brenner, Steve McQueen, and Eli Wallach.
- ‘Ringu’ (Japan, 1998)
- ‘The Ring’ (2002)
“Before you die, you see the ring.” It’s a simple premise, but one that resonated enough with American audience’s to earn $ 100 million-plus at the box office. Starring Naomi Watts and directed by Gore Verbinski, “The Ring” is a fairly faithful remake of Hideo Nakata’s 1998 Japanese “Ringu.” The success of “The Ring” spawned a series of Japanese horror remakes, most notably with “The Grudge,” but none seemed to capture the same critical and commercial success of “The Ring.”
- ‘La Jetée’ (France, 1962)
- ‘Twelve Monkeys’ (1995)
While Chris Marker’s “La Jetee” runs a short 28 minutes and is far more experimental than “Twelve Monkeys,” the similarities between the two movies are immediately recognizable. Terry Gilliam’s critically successful 1995 sci-fi flick includes the same imprisonment, abuse, and time-travel of the original — in fact, Gilliam even pays tribute to the French short with an image of a young boy at the end. While Bruce Willis is billed as the star, Brad Pitt steals the movie as a mental patient with mysterious ties to Willis’s character. If you haven’t seen “Twelve Monkeys,” watch “La Jetee” first.
- ‘Profumo di Donna’ (Italy, 1974)
- ‘Scent of a Woman’ (1992)
Based on the novel Il buio e il miele (“Darkness and Honey”) by Giovanni Arpino, “Profumo di Donna” tells the story of a young army cadet assigned to assist a blind Italian captain on a trip. While the root of the plot is the same, “Scent of a Woman” instead features Chris O’Donnell as a prep student paid to assist a blind man, played by Al Pacino, who won his first Oscar for the role.
- ‘La Totale!’ (France, 1991)
- ‘True Lies’ (1994)
Produced just three years after the French original, “True Lies” is generally viewed as bigger and better than its predecessor. The American remake stars Arnold Schwarzenegger and Jamie Lee Curtis, with James Cameron in the director’s chair. With Cameron at the helm and a much larger budget than its predecessor, the “suburban husband/father-slash-secret agent” storyline is catapulted to new, action-filled heights.
- ‘The Debt’ (Israel, 2007)
- ‘The Debt’ (2010)
Based on an Israeli movie of the same name, “The Debt” tells the story of three former Mossad agents who apprehended a Nazi war criminal in 1965, and the secrets that have weighed on them for more than 30 years. Starring Helen Mirren, Tom Wilkinson, and Ciarán Hinds in the older roles and Jessica Chastain, Marton Csokas, and Sam Worthington playing their younger selves, “The Debt” alternates between 1997 and the team’s assignment three decades prior. Both movies are well acted and executed, but the remake boasts more intense performances and tighter direction.
- ‘Insomnia’ (Norway, 1997)
- ‘Insomnia’ (2002)
Directed by Christopher Nolan, the American version of “Insomnia” is nearly identical to the Norwegian original (which stars Stellan Skarsgard), with the largest difference being the movies’ final moments. Both tell the story of two detectives who are sent to a small northern town (Alaska, in the American version), one where the sun never sets, to investigate the murder of a teenage girl. While the American “Insomnia” features a pre-“Batman Begins” Nolan and an Oscar-winning cast (Robin Williams, Al Pacino, and Hilary Swank), the debate over which movie reigns supreme is ongoing.
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