Escape From New York remake

Face it: John Carpenter‘s 1981 film Escape From New York will be remade eventually. That future may have just become bit more immediate as 20th Century Fox took the film’s remake rights in an open bidding process. This kills off any previous rumors about the remake, so at least we can start from scratch on that front.

Deadline reports the deal, saying that Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman’s The Picture Company will produce.

The original film took place in an alternate future (1997!) in which Manhattan had been closed off as a prison. When the President of the United States is stranded on the island, a tough-ass convict named Snake Plissken (originally played by Kurt Russell) is sent in to rescue him. If Plissken fails, he dies.

As you can probably guess, the idea here is to launch a new franchise. We don’t know what other new directions the story might take.

Deadline says that Carpenter is an exec producer on the film (which means he gets paid) and that he will “exert creative influence over the project.” We’ll see about that. Here’s what Carpenter said about remakes of his films last year during an appearance at a screening of Halloween.

What I do is, I sit on my couch, I extend my hand, and a check drops [into it]… They remake everything these days, it doesn’t mean anything. They just remake it because they think that the audience is so stupid that they won’t go see anything original. They look down on you, don’t you see that? I just want to get the check, that’s all I give a shit about.

On a less cynical note, Carpenter is about to release a new LP of music, rather confusingly called ‘Lost Themes.’ (Despite the title, this is new stuff, not old.) The tracks we’ve heard so far are great; maybe there’s some slim hope we could hear these, or music like this, used to score the remake. The first track, ‘Vortex,’ is just about perfect for the story.

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