Up-and-Comer Dean Israelite Aiming to Direct 'WarGames' Remake
"Is this a game or is it real?" Here we go again. MGM is apparently still intent on remaking the classic 80's computer hacker movie WarGames, and has picked up development again by hiring a brand new writer and director. Since 2011, The King of Kong's Seth Gordon was attached to direct, however the project never seemed to go anywhere (meanwhile MGM's other 80's remake, Red Dawn, flopped). Deadline is reporting that they're "close to signing" up-and-coming director Dean Israelite for the remake, a name we're not yet familiar with has his first film, a time travel sci-fi titled Project Almanac, was delayed from release this year.
There's not much known about the WarGames reboot, except that MGM seems intent on finding a way to make it happen (especially in the digital world we live in today). Instead of picking up with Seth Gordon, they're looking at Dean Israelite instead. Israelite will direct this reboot, and Arash Amel (Erased, Grace of Monaco, I Am Legend 2, Private War, Seducing Ingrid Bergman) will put together another draft of the script. Israelite has directed a number of shorts, but his feature debut is Project Almanac, once known as Welcome to Yesterday. The secret sci-fi project, produced by Michael Bay, is said to be akin to Chronicle but with a group of kids who can time travel. I hope they take it to the same extremes as Chronicle. That film was originally set to open February 2014, but is being delayed until January 2015 though it's likely finished.
As much as I despise everything about this remake/reboot and really don't feel it's necessary at all, if they have to go through with it, at least hiring someone like Dean Israelite is a good start. While I haven't seen Project Almanac yet, what I've heard about the movie (and about Israelite) makes me feel like he could be a fresh new vibe to the WarGames story, which was very much a product of its time, too. They likely want him because he can tell a modern everything-is-connected kind of story that will connect with today's teens, but does that mean it'll come anywhere close the original? Probably not. But it could be much worse. Stay tuned.