F. Gary Gray last directed Law Abiding Citizen, a film that ambitiously tried to push how far an audience could get behind a violent, justifiably angry anti-hero. As with several of Gray’s films, the idea was better than the execution, which ended up being silly more often than it was satisfying.
Gray has also been part of the revolving door directorial staff of the Bruce Willis/Jamie Foxx videogame adaptation Kane & Lynch, but there are reports that he has left that project. (Leaving Patrick Alessandrin to direct, though Gray’s name remains on IMDB.)
Now Gray has a new project lined up: the mystery thriller Hair of the Dog.
Variety says the Kirsten Elms screenplay is about ” a successful executive who becomes the victim of a vicious blackmail scheme that threatens to destroy his family. But he discovers he is just a pawn in the midst of a much darker agenda.”
No other talent is attached as yet, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see some recognizable names in the cast. As Variety notes, Gray’s mid-budgeted pictures tend to do well enough to attract bit talent. His movies are so middle of the road (most of the time — Law Abiding Citizen being an exception) that they’re easy sells to passive audiences, too.
That last statement pretty much takes care of everything I’d have to say about Gray. His movies aren’t for me, though The Italian Job and Friday were watchable and forgettably entertaining. But just watch A Man Apart to see how utterly absurd his stuff can be.
As for Kane & Lynch: Variety’s report on Hair of the Dog fails to mention it, which isn’t total confirmation that the director is not a part of the project, but a pretty good indicator. What’s up with that film that it has seen several directors (Simon Crane, Wayne Kramer, Gray) court the gig and then move on? Besides the fact that it is just another possibly homogenous videogame actioner, that is?