It seems that the studios were not blind to what the release date watchers among us knew all along–either Need for Speed or RoboCop would have to move off of February 7, 2014. Word came down today from DreamWorks that they would be the ones to move as they are taking the Scott Waugh-directed feature to March 14. Based on the popular video game series, the big screen adaptation will center around a race from New York to LA with Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul in the starring role. Imogen Poots is supporting along with Dominic Cooper.
This is definitely not an admission of defeat by any means. The studio remains hot on the project, but it must be said that March is a lot better than it used to be as nowadays many films see blockbuster paydays in the first month of spring. Need for Speed is actually nestled between releases for Tom Cruise’s All You Need Is Kill and Lionsgate’s Divergent which are two big movies in themselves. Make no doubt about it, the competition for box office dollars one year from now will be a whole lot hotter than it has been these past few weeks.
Just a quick mention here tonight as the video game genre heats up on the big screen. DreamWorks has enlisted Michael Keaton for Need for Speed in which he will play the host of a cross-country race that Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul joins in order to get revenge on the former colleague (Dominic Cooper) who framed him. In other words, this is a very small role, but anything with Keaton in it usually gets some love (like the upcoming Robocop reboot,) thus the recognition.
On the other side of things comes a reboot at Fox for Hitman. The studio has tapped Fast and Furious star Paul Walker to replace Timothy Olyphant as Agent 47. What they have is anyone’s guess; however, the last time out this series did find $100 million worldwide which does show a little bit of love even if that comes on the foreign level. As for Walker’s involvement, this is a win for him as he needs something to hang his hat on outside of the upcoming Fast and Furious 6 which has all sorts of heat going into release.
Good news for the Emmy-winning actor of Breaking Bad Aaron Paul. The actor has just been tapped to join DreamWorks’ Need for Speed movie from Act of Valor director Scott Waugh which instantly gives this thing a heap of credibility. Aaron Paul may be best known for his portrayal as Jesse Pinkman in his AMC series supporting Bryan Cranston, but he recently wow’d audiences this past weekend when the indie film Smashed came out to great reviews. Maybe this could be the start of something more than mild obscurity for the television star who once manipulated his way onto The Price Is Right. Continue Reading
Remember that Need for Speed movie that DreamWorks has in development? Well, apparently the studio is not about to let the franchise fall from their grips as they already started casting up the Scott Waugh (Act of Valor) directed movie. Today’s news is fairly controversial in that regard too because right now the only candidate for the film’s lead looks to be John Carter star Taylor Kitsch.
Kitsch was once considered to have a shot at becoming Hollywood’s next blockbuster leading man, but after multiple money losing efforts in the past year, it looks like the town is about to give up on the Friday Night Lights alumni. The more confusing part of that story though is that the public reaction to the actor seems to not mirror the one seen in accounting ledgers. Audiences are actually saying that when given the material, Kitsch can be one of the most fun leads to watch and that is perhaps why someone else is willing to give this man a shot. Continue Reading
Over the past few months, there have been several reports pertaining to a prospective Need for Speed movie that was presumably going to make its way to DreamWorks. Today came confirmation that, that is indeed what happened as the studio released an announcement specifying the acquisition of a project reportedly packaged together through Electronic Arts.
Directing will be Act of Valor’s Scott Waugh who will be realizing a screenplay by George Gatins. The script was originally put together from a story by George and his brother John who worked on Real Steel, another DreamWorks’ property. That particular feature did fairly well with audiences and gross $85 million domestically despite an October release, so it goes without saying that the studio has confidence in the Gatins Brothers’ appeal.
The idea behind making Need for Speed into a full length feature film is something transcendent of what the goal was with Real Steel though as it is apparent that the studio would like their very own Fast and Furious franchise. The trouble there is that Paramount actually abandoned the street race genre in favor of a heist format in order succeed and any NFS movie might have difficulty doing that without looking like a complete rip-off. Maybe that is the goal though–to actually fill that now vacant spot with moviegoers with a format dedicated to high octane drag races down Main Street.
Things appear to be moving rather quickly around this project, so expect to hear more about it within the coming months.
Just over a month ago, it made headlines that DreamWorks was preparing to bring the moderately successful Need for Speed video game franchise to the big screen. While no one had any idea as to why they were doing this, many had the sense that the studio was preparing a Fast and Furious clone of sorts, but they needed a well-known property to give it credibility. Continue Reading
Video games may not be what they used to be in terms of a mass market imprint outside of a handful of recurring properties, but nonetheless they still have legs when it comes to Hollywood wanting to adapt gaming franchises for the big screen. The news is today that DreamWorks is about to acquire the rights to Need For Speed –a series of racing games that has been around for nearly two decades.
Seeing how every year there is a new catch in order to stay fresh, it would appear that whatever is planned remains silent at this time. When Deadline first reported the news, they claimed the video game saga is about a race from San Francisco to New York which is only describing the series’ most recent iteration entitled The Run, so it remains unclear if that could be the movie’s premise or simply sloppy journalism.
If DreamWorks does go the route of The Run, it would not be too shocking considering it is one of the only versions of Need for Speed to contain a well-scripted story. It also does not hurt that there is a CGI version of Mad Men actress Christina Hendricks throughout much of the game’s campaign mode. On the other hand, it might be a move to create a Fast and the Furious-like series which would mean fast cars, a large recurring ensemble, and plenty of heists.
Real Steel director John Gatins will be tasked with producing the effort and his brother George will be writing. This will be his first screenplay credit, but George has worked in feature films before as he does have an executive producing credit for 2010′s She’s Out of My League–a relatively profitable comedy starring Jay Baruchel.