Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Richard Linklater Frontrunner To Direct 'The Rosie Project' Starring Jennifer Lawrence Richard Linklater Frontrunner To Direct 'The Rosie Project' Starring Jennifer Lawrence The 10 Best And 5 Worst Tom Cruise Performances The 10 Best And 5 Worst Tom Cruise Performances Just For Laughs: 'The Big Lebowski' Live Read With Michael Fassbender & Jennifer Lawrence Just For Laughs: 'The Big Lebowski' Live Read With Michael Fassbender & Jennifer Lawrence Union Rep Says Safety Was A Concern On 'The Revenant' Shoot Union Rep Says Safety Was A Concern On 'The Revenant' Shoot All The Songs In 'Paper Towns' Including Bon Iver, Wilco, Vampire Weekend, Bob Dylan, And More All The Songs In 'Paper Towns' Including Bon Iver, Wilco, Vampire Weekend, Bob Dylan, And More "A Living Hell": 'The Revenant' Is Reportedly $35 Million Over Budget, A Producer Exited The Movie, And More "A Living Hell": 'The Revenant' Is Reportedly $35 Million Over Budget, A Producer Exited The Movie, And More 'Top Of The Lake' Season 2 Starts Shooting This Year, Elisabeth Moss Returns 'Top Of The Lake' Season 2 Starts Shooting This Year, Elisabeth Moss Returns Watch: Trailer For Bret Easton Ellis’ Penned Teen Horror ‘The Curse of Downers Grove’ With Bella Heathcote Watch: Trailer For Bret Easton Ellis’ Penned Teen Horror ‘The Curse of Downers Grove’ With Bella Heathcote Watch: Video Essay Counts Down The 10 Most Beautiful Movies Of All Time Watch: Video Essay Counts Down The 10 Most Beautiful Movies Of All Time Watch: Bond Is Back In New Trailer For 'Spectre' With Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Lea Seydoux, And More Watch: Bond Is Back In New Trailer For 'Spectre' With Daniel Craig, Christoph Waltz, Lea Seydoux, And More Alejandro González Iñárritu Still Has To Shoot The Finale Of 'The Revenant' Alejandro González Iñárritu Still Has To Shoot The Finale Of 'The Revenant' The 20 Best Films Of 2015 So Far The 20 Best Films Of 2015 So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season The 20 Best TV Shows Of The 2013/2014 Season Stephen King Says Wendy In Kubrick's 'The Shining' Is "One Of The Most Misogynistic Characters Ever Put On Film" Stephen King Says Wendy In Kubrick's 'The Shining' Is "One Of The Most Misogynistic Characters Ever Put On Film" All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More All The Songs In 'Pitch Perfect' Including La Roux, David Guetta, Azealia Banks, Nicki Minaj & More "It Was A Clusterfuck From Day One": 5 Things About Neill Blomkamp's Failed 'Halo' Movie "It Was A Clusterfuck From Day One": 5 Things About Neill Blomkamp's Failed 'Halo' Movie Martin Scorsese Names His 11 Scariest Horror Movies of All Time Martin Scorsese Names His 11 Scariest Horror Movies of All Time

Has Spike Lee Been Released From Director's Jail...For The 'Oldboy' Remake?

Photo of Oliver Lyttelton By Oliver Lyttelton | The Playlist July 6, 2011 at 12:57PM

All in all, Spike Lee is one of our favorite working filmmakers, and really, how could the man behind "She's Gotta Have It," "Do The Right Thing," "Malcolm X" and "25th Hour" not be? But he's also extremely inconsistent, and the critical and commercial failure of his last picture, the WW2 drama "Miracle At St. Anna," have made things trickier for the director: over the weekend, he told The Hollywood Reporter that he hasn't been able to get financing for any of his films in three years, even a sequel to his biggest hit, the starry thriller "Inside Man."
8


All in all, Spike Lee is one of our favorite working filmmakers, and really, how could the man behind "She's Gotta Have It," "Do The Right Thing," "Malcolm X" and "25th Hour" not be? But he's also extremely inconsistent, and the critical and commercial failure of his last picture, the WW2 drama "Miracle At St. Anna," have made things trickier for the director: over the weekend, he told The Hollywood Reporter that he hasn't been able to get financing for any of his films in three years, even a sequel to his biggest hit, the starry thriller "Inside Man."

That film could never get the green-light, and neither could biopics of Jackie Robinson & James Brown and the self-penned ensemble drama "Brooklyn Loves MJ," while even replacing Martin Campbell on the thriller "Nagasaki Deadline," a project that seemed like a straight-up paycheck gig, came to nothing, leaving the director to stick to TV and documentary work. But an interesting rumor emerged overnight, one that might see Lee return to the big screen, for a project that many films fans have been dreading for some time; the long-gestating remake of Park Chan-Wook's modern Korean classic "Oldboy."

Ever since that movie, a brutal revenge story about a man imprisoned for decades by a mysterious stranger, was released back in 2003, talk of an Americanization has circulated, and 2008 saw Will Smith and Steven Spielberg, an actor/director pair as ill-suited to the project as possible, attach themselves to the film. They departed not long after when Mandate and DreamWorks fell out, but late last year, it was reported that writer Mark Protosevich ("I Am Legend") had turned in a draft that had executives jumping for joy, and that Spielberg had been approached again, along with Matthew Vaughn and Danny Boyle.

It seems that those three have all turned the film down, as Twitch, who've been on a pretty hot run with the scoops of late, report that Lee is now in talks to helm the remake, which would mark his first directorial feature since "Miracle At St. Anna." If it works out, Lee would certainly mark a better choice for the material than Spielberg, even if it still doesn't quite seem like the right choice. But then, our ideal pick for director would be, well, no one, and if it gets Lee back to work, and hopefully gives him the cachet to get something he really wants to make going, than we suppose it at least gives the remake some purpose.

Of course, none of this is confirmed yet, and Drew McWeeny says on Twitter that he believes that there are legal issues over the rights to the film that may tie things up. Only time will tell if Lee's appointment will finally push one of the less necessary remakes around forward, at long last.

This article is related to: Films, Spike Lee, Oldboy (Remake)


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates