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Lupita Nyong'o is The Killer in John Woo's remake of his own film

The Killer John Woo Chow Yun-Fat Danny Lee Sally Yeh

Back in 1989, director John Woo blew audiences away with his Chinese action movie THE KILLER, which features some of the most incredible gunplay action scenes ever put to film. An American remake has been in development off and on pretty much ever since THE KILLER was released, with Walter Hill attached to direct at one point and John H. Lee attached at another. There were even plans to make it in 3D! But almost thirty years later, no one has managed to get an American remake of THE KILLER into production... So John Woo is going to make it himself.

The project is set up at Universal Pictures, and the studio is describing it as a "reimagination" of the original story.

Starring Chow Yun-Fat, Danny Lee, and Sally Yeh, THE KILLER was about

an assassin who accidentally damages the eyes of a singer. The two fall in love, and he decides to perform one last hit in order to pay for a corneal transplant to prevent her from going blind.

Hill had wanted to cast Richard Gere and Denzel Washington as the assassin and the police officer he bonds with over the course of the story. A producer later suggested that the police officer be changed to a female character, possibly played by Michelle Yeoh. Lee was going to cast Sarah Li as the blind singer.

Woo has found the lead for his remake, and there has been a gender swap, not for the police officer character but for the assassin: in Woo's new take on the concept, the Chow Yun-Fat character is going to be played by Lupita Nyong'o.

An Oscar winner for her role in 12 YEARS A SLAVE, Nyong'o has played an alien role in the new STAR WARS films and was most recently seen on the big screen as Nakia in BLACK PANTHER.

The director only had a loose treatment for the original THE KILLER when that film went into production. The script situation on this remake/reimagination is quite different: Josh Campbell and Matt Stuecken wrote a screenplay that has since been rewritten by Eran Creevy, and now Brian Helgeland has been brought on to do a fresh polish.

Woo is producing the new THE KILLER with Entertainment One's Mark Gordon and Matt Jackson. Luc Etienne serves as executive producer. Universal's vice president of production Sara Scott will be overseeing the project for the studio.

It's going to be very tough for Woo to live up to his own original film. While I'm interested to see how the story will change with Nyong'o in the lead, the area where I'm concerned this new film might fall short is in the shootout sequences. I really hope they're not disappointing compared to the ones in the '89 film.

Extra Tidbit: Are you a fan of THE KILLER?
Source: Variety

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