Killer Elite remake set for September release

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James Caan fights a ninja in The Killer Elite
James Caan fights a ninja in The Killer Elite

Open Road Films announced today that it will release Omnilab Media’s Killer Elite remake – the action thriller starring Jason Statham, Clive Owen and Robert De Niro, and directed by Gary McKendry – in U.S. theatres nationwide on September 23rd, 2011.

Based on a true story, Killer Elite races across the globe from Australia to Paris, London and the Middle East in the action-packed account of an ex-special ops agent (Jason Statham) who is lured out of retirement to rescue his mentor (Robert De Niro). To complete the rescue, he must complete the near-impossible mission of killing three tough-as-nails assassins with a cunning leader (Clive Owen).

The original 1975 film was directed by Sam Peckinpah, who worked from a script by Marc Norman and Stirling Silliphant. The film starred James Caan, Robert Duvall, Arthur Hill, Bo Hopkins, Mako, Burt Young, Gig Young, Tom Clancy, Tiana Alexandra, Walter Kelley, Kate Heflin and Sondra Blake.

Trivia: Donnie Williams, a martial artist who appeared in a number of Chuck Norris films, mentioned in an interview I had with him recently, that he was scheduled to appear in the original Killer Elite, however director Sam Peckinpah removed him from the cast at the last minute. To this day, he still collects residual paychecks from the film, even though he never appeared in or worked on it.