The popularity of Escape From New York has grown over time, developing a cult following since its debut in 1981, and now it seems the story will once again see the big screen. After winning out on a bidding war for the rights to the film, Fox has made a deal to reboot Escape From New York, according to Daily Mail. There are few details this early in the process, but it has been confirmed that John Carpenter, writer and director for the original 1981 Escape From New York, will be involved in the film. Carpenter has signed on to executive produce the Escape From New York reboot and Fox representatives reports that Mr. Carpenter will also have creative influence over the film.
Escape From New York was set in the year 1997 and the studio will have to opt for another time period to set up the dystopian future for the story. In the original Escape From New York, Snake Plisskin (Kurt Russell), a former bank robber and special forces operative, is recruited by the government to penetrate New York City, which has become one large penal colony. His mission is to rescue the president from the prison and return him to safety.
Fox may not invite Kurt Russell, who is now 63, to return in the role he made famous, because the studio hopes the first reboot will be successful enough to develop into an ongoing sci-fi/action franchise. So who will don the eyepatch and step up to save the president? Rumors suggest that Charlie Hunnam (Sons Of Anarchy) and Chris Hemsworth (Thor) are both in the running for the Escape From New York role. At one time, Gerard Butler was considered for the role.
Kurt Russell expressed his disappointment with that choice in an interview with Entertainment Weekly.
“I will say that when I was told who was going to play Snake Plissken, my initial reaction was ‘Oh, man.’ I do think that character was quintessentially one thing. And that is, American.”
This isn’t the first time the Escape From New York story has been revisited. Russell reprised his role as iconic Snake Plisskin in an updated 1996 sequel, Escape From L.A. The plot of Escape From L.A. was similar to that of Escape From New York, with Plisskin sent into Los Angeles, now an ungoverned island, where undesirables were exiled, to retrieve a doomsday weapon, but the sequel failed to capture the imaginations of its viewers. Fox hopes that a fresh start with new writers and new performers will make the Escape From New York reboot a successful venture, but they will need more than fresh faces to maintain the steam necessary for an entire Escape From New York franchise. There are only so many states capable of becoming islands, after all.
In more movie news, the King Kong prequel gets a new name.