David Yates Gets 'Scarface' Reboot, Len Wiseman Leaves 'The Mummy'
Back in November of 2011, news surfaced that Universal Pictures was developing a new Scarface that was neither a sequel nor a remake of the 1983 Brian De Palma film, or the controversial black and white gangster film in 1932. At the time, it was said that the film would take common elements of those films to follow an outsider immigrant making his way into organized crime as he tries to achieve the American dream. Street Kings and End of Watch writer and director David Ayer was hired to script the film in the fall of 2011, and now Deadline reports Harry Potter franchise director David Yates is in talks to direct.
Details on the story this time around are still scarce, though there are rumblings that the main character will be Mexican. Ayer previously talked about his approach to the film:
"I see it as the story of the American dream, with a character whose moral compass points in a different direction. That puts it right in my wheelhouse. I studied both the original Ben Hecht-Howard Hawks movie and the DePalma-Pacino version and found some universal themes. I’m still under the hood figuring out the wiring that will translate, but both films had a specificity of place, there was unapologetic violence, and a main character who socially scared the shit out of people, but who had his own moral code. Each was faithful to the underworld of its time. There are enough opportunities in the real world today that provide an opportunity to do this right. If it was just an attempt to remake the 1983 film, that would never work.”
Yates is a solid choice to bring some weight to this new crime film, but it will still have plenty of skeptics just because of the film's title. The 1983 Scarface is quite the revered film, and even the classic 1932 film is held in high regard for the the time it was produced. Though Yates is better know for directing the last four films in the Harry Potter franchise, he also gained a lot of acclaim for directing the British miniseries State of Play, which became an American film starring Russell Crowe and Rachel McAdams. The film certainly has an uphill battle, but maybe this could turn out to be something great.
Meanwhile, another reboot at Universal has lost a director. The Wrap reports Total Recall remake director Len Wiseman has left the reboot of The Mummy. The studio was looking to get the film off the ground sooner than later, but Wiseman's schedule will not allow him to stick with the film. Now producers, which include Star Trek writers Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, are on the hunt for a new director to take hold of the script from Prometheus scribe Jon Spaihts. The reboot will supposedly give the titular classic movie monster a bit of a human personality and draws inspiration from the work of Michael Crichton with some sci-fi/fantasy being based in modern day science, like Jurassic Park.
This is only good news for the reboot since Wiseman is pretty much one of the most generic and least stylish directors working today. Underworld is an average horror action film, but Live Free or Die Hard and Total Recall are fairly lame action films. My pick to take over the film would be Ruben Fleischer. The director showed that he had style with the Gangster Squad reboot, even if the film had some faults, and he knows how to direct big action. Whoever Universal finds, the studio is desperate for a hit, and hopefully their going back to the movie monster well from their cinematic history will help out.