I’ve been watching this project for years. As regular readers of the site know, I’m a huge fan of 1970’s action films, so projects like Taking of Pelham 123 and The Mechanic have been on my radar since studios decided to capitalize on them years ago.
IMDB has had The Mechanic remake listed as being a remake in name only for years. The synopsis says that it will be reimagined as a spy thriller in a post 9/11 world.
Empire reports that Jason Statham has just signed on to take Charles Bronson’s role from the 1972 original, with Simon West (Con Air, When A Stranger Calls) attached to direct. Great casting in Statham, but I wonder if West can pull off such a gritty style-actioner, if they go that way. Of course it could be “re-imagined” as a slicker film, but I’m hoping they go the Jason Bourne/Taken route.
Bronson’s Arthur Bishop was known for his distance kills – via rifle, poisoning and explosions. In one scene, he drugged a victim’s tea bags, waited until the drug took affect, then set-off a C-4 bomb from a perch across from the guy’s apartment. The way the new film is shaping up, there will probably be more hand-to-hand combat involved, which could be exciting.
According to the report, the story will now be along the lines of the original, focusing on a highly-skilled but emotionally detached hitman, who’s planning to retire when a young man asks to be trained in the profession. Only this new apprentice is the son of one of the Mechanic’s victims.
No word on who might be cast in the role of the apprentice, originally played by Jan-Michael Vincent. Any ideas out there?
The film begins shooting this summer in Shreveport, Louisiana, from a script by Shane Salerno, who wrote AVPR: Aliens vs Predator – Requiem and a spec script for Fox’s potential Seven Samurai-style sci-fi epic Doomsday Protocol.