Screen Gems Wants to Remake 'The Raid'

Screen Gems Wants to Remake 'The Raid'

Sep 21, 2011

Still from Gareth Evans' The Raid

Well, that didn’t take long…

Gareth Evans’ The Raid was the talk of the town at the Toronto International Film Festival – and now Hollywood is champing at the bit to remake the Indonesian action flick before most American audiences even have the opportunity to see what all the fuss is about…

The film, which tells the tale of a SWAT team trapped inside a tenement building run by a ruthless mobster hellbent on killing them, was acquired for distribution by Sony Pictures Worldwide. This has paved the way for Screen Gems, a company also under the Sony umbrella, to swoop in and attempt to grab the remake rights. Part of Sony Worldwide’s deal called for the company to have first crack at remaking the film for the American market.

The title reunites Evans and up-and-coming Indonesian martial arts star Iko Uwais (the two previously collaborated on Merantau – a stylish fish-out-of-water story about a young man on his journey to manhood who runs afoul of thugs in the big city), but it seems unlikely that either will be involved in the remake. Evans has already passed, stating he’d rather work on the sequel to The Raid – which he’s set to shoot in February.

As THR points out, it remains unclear as to whether or not Screen Gems understands that part of what makes The Raid so cool is the Silat martial arts style of fighting. It seems highly unlikely that any big name actors in Hollywood are proficient in the form – and removing it tends to make a remake sort of pointless.

Even more troubling is what this news means for fans waiting for the original. Screen Gems and Sony handled the remake of Paco Plaza and Jaume Balaguero’s horror film Rec a few years back – and they held the American release of Rec up for ages so that the remake Quarantine could come out first. If that happens again, American action fans could be waiting for well over a year before they get a chance to see Evans’ newest film. That would be a tragedy. 

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