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Denzel Washington Is Sony's Choice To Star In Adaptation Of 80s CBS Crime-Solver Series "The Equalizer"

by Tambay A. Obenson
December 13, 2011 4:37 PM
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First announced over a year ago, when Russell Crowe was said to be attached to star, Sony Pictures' big screen adaptation of the the late 80s CBS vigilante crime-solving series, The Equalizer, is apparently still very much in the studios pipeline; this time however, in an announcement the made today (via Coming Soon), in which it stated that it had extended its first-look deal with Escape Artists, Denzel Washington is now the man being eyed to star the film.

Here's the exact quote:

A feature film adaptation of the hit 1980s television series "The Equalizer," to be written by Richard Wenk. The project is being developed with Denzel Washington in mind to star and Alex Siskind is partnered with Escape Artists to produce.

There's more, but that's the meaty part. 

The TV series, which I remember watching and liking, though I was a kid at the time, was set in New York, and centered on a former secret agent (played by the late Edward Woodward) with a "mysterious past" who tries to atone for past sins by offering, free of charge, his services as an investigator, aided by a diverse group of other sometimes-mysterious contacts (some of whom date back to his spying days).

An adaptation isn't at all necessary; they could just come up with a new crime/detective story idea, and write a script based on that. But, you know how these studios are. The series ran for 5 seasons, and I don't recall how much of a hit show it was for CBS. 

What I remember most is the soundtrack that accompanied the series' opening credits, which was created by Stewart Copeland of The Police, which actually became a hit for him.

Watch below:

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  • djp | December 13, 2011 10:02 PMReply

    No Black action stars. What about that Black actor who starred in Bad Boys? Then he starred in Independence Day, Wild Wild West, Bad Boys 2, I Robot, Men in Black 1 & 2 and I Am Legend. Too bad his name escapes me.

  • Jug | December 14, 2011 1:02 PM

    Holy Geezuz, R we in agreement JMac LOL But you're right. And to top it off DJP, most of those films you named, were in the I said...when there WERE recognizably BLACK action heroes. Remember, "action" films also included crime films, the hip hop/kung fu hybrids & sci-fi. I mean damn, can we get another EVENT HORIZON?! The actors are still out there...Michael Jai White, Wesley, The Rock (he is in the special both sides of the fence category along with Vin Diesel)...well that's about it LOL But Big Willy's appeal as an action star has waned not really because of his hiatus, but the landscape as a whole is not predisposed to actors of color being the action guy (or masculine men for that matter). SO, before we get all misty eyed about Will Smith of yesteryear, let's look at the reality of action films & who is in them. Non-name, young, WHITE stars. It also hurts because comic book films have taken the place of traditional action films-HELL BOY, CAPT AMERICA, BATMAN, SPIDERMAN, IRON MAN, X-MEN, WOLVERINE, etc..hell even MIB is a comic book & other than Will there are NO black actors in that franchise. Not saying there has to be, but just calling it what it is. And we've all lamented on S&A about the dearth of Black characters making the transition (though there's more than enough in print). Other action franchises have gone the route of getting younger & younger actors to appeal to a family & young female demo while pumping up the CGI to get young men in the seats (which ironically has been failing of late), like TRON & the upcoming AKIRA. Don't believe me, Warner Bros just put the breaks on PARADISE LOST & ARTHUR & LANCELOT because of budget concerns the same way Disney did to Johnny Depp & LONE RANGER. Yes, the same Johnny Depp who has made them Billions of dollars, they came thru like ATF & shut his shit down! One of the bigger action hits of the year was a damn MoCap Monkey damnit! LOL Action movies & their stars are not what they once were, and so goes the star casting. And the horizon doesn't look to be getting any better. But back to Will...if I were a betting man, I'd say that Will's next couple of films will be family friendly sci-fi joints..Oh Wait! He IS making that his next film with his son, A.E.-which is basically PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS on an alien planet. I can just hear the techno version of "Just the Two of Us" now...

  • Jmac | December 13, 2011 10:42 PM

    Then this actor must not be any good if you can't remember his name, lol. I believe the point was there's no kick-ass, Blade-type, get a suspect to speak by breaking a few fingers while threatening imminent death black heroes right now. Of course, some would find that a negative depiction of maleness- esp. for a black character but whatever. Men know what men like.

  • Ghost | December 13, 2011 9:19 PMReply

    If this movie means one step closer to see the rest of the series on DVD and hearing the extended version of that theme. I'm all in.

    Wonder will Steve Williams be in it since he was in the first season of the series, along with some well known actress whose name I just forgot. I want to say it's some Emmy winning actress back when she was a kid.

  • Jug | December 13, 2011 6:58 PMReply

    Good. Thing. I actually liked the series when I was young. And Denzel is seeing the writing on the wall. There are No. Black. Action. Stars. He is scooping everything up & coming out swinging. He got that Oscar and he is not playing. Since 9/11, America wants hardcore vigilante-style heroes back, the heroes of the late 90s with their thinking man's cap are going away. We want kick ass & take names later. And there are no Black ones (thanks Wesley), so he's coping those titles & making them happen. TRAINING DAY, MAN ON FIRE, BOOK OF ELI, JOHN Q, SAFE HOUSE. If it happens, I'll see it. Still love Denzel man.

  • Donella | December 13, 2011 5:25 PMReply

    It's hard to beat the name-brand recognition of "The Equalizer" for attracting an audience. It was an excellent series. I'm thrilled that Denzel is attached. He is a true alpha male who dominates every scene in which he acts. Perfect!

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