By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist April 21, 2012 at 2:27PM
It's not easy to shake-off the wholesome teen heartthrob image to transition into a "serious actor" but generally, young thesps try (and often fail) to do something gritty to prove their skills. Just look at the kids in the "Twilight" series. Kristen Stewart has arguably done better than the rest of her co-stars, playing a young prostitute in "Welcome To The Rileys" and Joan Jett in "The Runaways," while Robert Pattinson missed with the weepie "Remember Me" and will try again by fucking Juliette Binoche in a limo in David Cronenberg's "Cosmopolis." But the biggest whiff goes to Taylor Lautner whose Bourne-style action thriller "Abduction" tanked and at the same time kiboshed any chance he had of leading "Stretch Armstrong." He's now going to take a role in "Grown Ups 2." Well, now another young actor is hoping to step into the big time and he's taken a page from the dubious Lautner playbook.
Jaden Smith, who had a box office hit with "The Karate Kid" and is currently shooting the sci-fi flick "After Earth" with director M. Night Shyamalan, co-starring with his Dad Big Willie, is getting the action vehicle "Boy Nobody" developed for him by Sony. Basically the concept is a direct ripoff of Bourne or "Hanna," with the story centering on a brainwashed teen assassin who starts to feel feelings. The project is based off the book by Allen Zadoff which is -- of course -- the first in a trilogy, and this literary masterwork will hit bookstores and Kindles or whatever next spring.
We understand that Jaden Smith probably feels he needs to show a bit of range as his acting career evolves, we get that, but to choose something so nakedly uninspired as this is the least exciting way to go about it. Will anyone want to see a teen-oriented Bourne with the guy who is Will Smith's son? Guess we'll find out soon enough. And hey, there's always "Grown Ups 3." [Variety]