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Mike Nichols Remaking Akira Kurosawa's High and Low

by
October 29, 2008

Akira Kurosawa's High and Low

Filmmaker Mike Nichols, of Closer and Charlie Wilson's War most recently, will direct a remake of Akira Kurosawa's High and Low, a 1963 detective thriller starring Toshiro Mifune. The script was written by David Mamet, who was originally commissioned by Martin Scorsese to write this remake back in 1999, but it took over two years for producer Scott Rudin to get all the rights they needed. Miramax is now finalizing the production details on this remake, although a start date hasn't been set just yet nor has casting begun. Although this is already a Kurosawa classic, it seems like the perfect story for a modern remake.

High and Low deals with a tough morality issue. Businessman Kingo Gondo learns that his son has been kidnapped and that the ransom demanded is near the amount that he has raised for a critical business deal. He is prepared to pay the ransom - that is, until he learns that the kidnappers have mistakenly abducted not his own son, but the child of his driver. Now he must decide whether the other man's child is equally worth saving. The story is actually based on Ed McBain's novel "King's Ransom" and sounds like a fascinating concept for a thriller. I'm actually very excited to see what Mamet and Nichols will do with this.

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  • TBone
    Imagine if Scorsese would have directed this, love his stuff, but I think Nichols did an excellent job with Charlie Wilson's War, and have high hopes for this one.
  • Red Buttons
    all i heard was mamet and i came.
  • BahHumbug
    Mamet and Nichols! That sounds great. I hope they find a way to pay homage and modernize Kurosawa's story for today's audiences.
  • Matthias Galvin
    This is so full of fail. Do yourself a service, and watch the original High and Low. It is a great film, and entirely undeserving of a remake. The very idea of a "modern update" is, I think, preposterous. The reason being that timeless films are, in fact, timeless. Does Rashomon get old just because the period is different? What about The Seven Samurai? Do either of those films need "Modern updates"? Of course not. I hope this project falls through.
  • Chris
    "...sounds like a fascinating concept for a thriller." Then why not go and watch it? You don't have to wait the three years it will take for this remake to actually hit theatres.
  • Criterion Edition of High & Low!! I didn't know! ...and here i am, proud of my crappy dvd import. Anyway, Mike Nichols is great with actors, i would watch his remake.
  • High and Low is my favorite Kurosawa film, and those who wait to see a remake (even if done by Nichols/Mamet, both of whom I very much like) will miss out on one of the greatest thrillers ever made.
  • DR DTX
    Another stale miss from our creatively bankrupt movie industry ----furrrsurre!
  • david
    It is foolish to remake an Akira Kurosawa's movie...

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