Grumpy Old Men was a popular comedy that came out in 1993 and starred longtime co-stars Jack Lemmon and Walter Matthau as feuding old guys. The film, which co-starred Ann-Margret, Burgess Meredith, Ossie Davis, and Kevin Pollak, led to a sequel two years later called Grumpier Old Men.
Lemmon and Matthau are both long dead, but it appears Hollywood is going back to the Grumpy Old Men well. According to Deadline, writers Dan Gregor & Doug Mand have been hired to script a remake of the film for New Line, with Eddie Murphy attached to star and Samuel L. Jackson “circling” the project.
It’s unclear who else might be appearing in the film or whether the plot will focus on a fight over a woman like the original Grumpy Old Men did. Deadline had reported last fall that such a remake was under consideration, with Murphy attached.
Tim Story, director of films in the Barbershop, Fantastic Four, Think Like A Man, and Ride Along franchises, is in line to the direct the film.
The two writers directed the indie film Most Likely To Murder – co-starring Gregor’s wife Rachel Bloom- and were staff writers on How I Met Your Mother and The Comedians. The two are also reportedly attached to a remake of the 1990s baseball comedy Rookie of the Year.
Grumpy Old Men was the sixth film Lemmon and Matthau made together in their careers; it was followed by both an Odd Couple sequel and Out to Sea as well as Grumpier Old Men.
When the first Grumpy Old Men was made, Lemmon was 68-years-old and Matthau was 73. As of now, Murphy is 58, while Jackson is 70.
Murphy, meanwhile, is currently making a sequel to a film even older than Grumpy Old Men. Coming to America 2, per The Observer, is set to release sometime in 2020. Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, and Shari Headley are among the other actors returning from the original. Craig Brewer of Hustle & Flow is directing the movie from a script by Black-ish creator Kenya Barris.
In fact, the original Coming to America, in which Jackson appeared in a single scene as a robber, is one of the only projects in which Murphy and Jackson have appeared together. Another is the 1987 concert film Eddie Murphy RAW, in which Jackson appeared in a comedy sketch. But the two comedians have never shared top billing on a project in their long careers.