Briefly: We haven’t seen Chris Tucker on screens since Rush Hour 3, but he’s now attached to The Rabbit, a spec script that was just bought by Warner Bros. What’s the movie about? Great question. Deadline, which relates info about the sale, only knows that we should “think Midnight Run,” which suggests buddy comedy, some action, and some thriller-ish elements. Which leaves us knowing basically nothing.
Micah Barnett wrote the script, and Dan Lin is producing. The latter point, plus the idea that Chris Tucker might be in the film, tells us a bit more, as Lin’s producer credits include The Invention of Lying and the Sherlock Holmes movies. So: comedic and mainstream. But you could have guessed that. Micah Bernett has also seen his script The Merc List optioned by Paranormal Activity producers Jason Blum and Steven Schneider — that’s a “futuristic thriller,” but we haven’t heard anything about that sale since 2009. We’ll see if this one goes anywhere. I always hope for the Chris Tucker who briefly appeared in Jackie Brown when a new role crops up for him, but history has taught me to expect more along the lines of Rush Hour.
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Movieline caught up with hack director Brett Ratner and was able to get “The Rat” to go on record about the many films listed on the director’s Internet Movie Database page. As suspected, most of them aren’t happening or are in early stages of development.
But the film Ratner claims is the “closest to getting made” is Trump Heist. The action crime comedy tells the story of a bunch of employees of the Trump Tower who conspire to rip off the building’s residents. Eddie Murphy is signed to play the leader of the crew of con artists and Chris Rock, Dave Chappelle and Chris Tucker are reportedly in consideration to join the cast. Ratner just hired Ocean’s Eleven scribe Ted Griffin to re-write the script.
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Jackie Chan: Chris, my man, let’s make new movie.
Chris Tucker [getting pedicure beside $-shaped pool]: I dunno Jackie, Rush Hour 4?! Already?! You think all the fans can handle it?
Jackie: No, not Rush Hour. Something…more…original.
Chris: Jackie, you so crazy. I love it.
Jackie: I love you too Chris. Let’s find good writer. Maybe we call Brett after.
Chris [tells the nail girl to go slower]: Jackie, I’m excited, man! Me and you together again?! Let’s do it! Call MTV.
[for historical record: apparently Chris and Jackie made this decision in person]
My name is Steve Mason, and I’m the guy who wrote that $50M was slightly disappointing for Rush Hour 3 (Editors Note: The comment thread spun off into an editorial written by Peter Sciretta comparing the film’s box office to Mission: Impossible 3). I’ve got nothing against Brett Ratner or Chris Tucker or New Line. In fact, I opened RUSH HOUR 3 at my theatres across from USC in Los Angeles (where the film did very well).
The movie business is really just an expectations game. People expected a number in the $60M-$65M range. It didn’t get there.
Also, New Line is reportedly paying 40% of the domestic gross to Tucker, Chan and Ratner. Tucker was paid $25M (against 20% of the gross) and Chan was paid $15M (against 15% of the gross). That’s not all. Ratner gets $5M (against 5% of the gross) and screenwriter Jeff Nathanson was paid well over $1M.
If the picture grosses $150M domestic, which is very possible, Tucker gets $30M, Chan gets $22.5M and Ratner gets $7.5M. That’s $60M right off the top.
Now, here are 2 other amazing caveats. New Line does not have distribution rights in China and Hong Kong where Chan is huge. Jackie has the right to distribute RUSH HOUR 3 in those territories. (Good for Chan!)Â Â Also, New Line made a 2 picture deal with Chris Tucker. The 2nd film has yet to be determined, but he will be paid the same price of $25M vs. 20% of the gross.
All of this adds up to a “slightly disappointing” weekend. You decide how “slight” that disappointment is at New Line.
Apparently there is a scene in Rush Hour 3 where Chris Tucker has an angry homophobic reaction (played for laughs) to a transsexual who removes her wig after a “sexual interaction”. I haven’t seen the movie so I may be getting this wrong as the contents of the scene are not completely spelled out. When The Advocate questioned Brett Ratner about putting homophobic jokes in his film, the hack director responded by saying, it’s okay because he’s also had the same experience. Um, what?
“No, no! That’s from my personal experience. My first blow job was from a man, but I didn’t know it was a man. That’s where that comes from. It’s based on personal experience. It happens to a lot of people,” claims Ratner. “I’m not homophobic or uptight about it. That happens to a lot of heterosexuals. You meet a girl in a bar, and it turns out she’s not a girl. I think a girl should tell you if she’s a girl or a man–that way it’s your preference. It’s comedy. Look, in this movie we don’t pull any punches. We make fun of black people. We make fun of Chinese people. We make fun of French people. We make fun of gay situations. We make fun of whites. It doesn’t matter. It’s the type of movie it is. It’s a fish-out-of-water comedy. You have to have those types of situations to have the comedy. That specific idea was because it’s happened to me. It’s happened to my friends. We’ll get together with a girl, and it’ll turn out to be a guy. The reaction is “Oh, shit!” if you’re not gay, which is funny, I think. Getting into the situation is funny. I laugh whenever I see one of my friends talking to a girl, and I’ll ask, “Is that a man or a woman?” It’s funny, especially if you don’t know about it. If you know about it, fine. If that’s your preference… “
I’m not homophobic. I live in San Francisco and am am very liberal, yet at the same time, very politically incorrect. Personally I don’t see the problem with a scene where a strait character has a post-homophobic response to gay sexual contact. Many gay advocate groups also had a problem with that Snickers superbowl commercial. When it’s played for laughs and not hate, then I see no problem (at least in the situation as it was described to me). I could understand if people were upset in another situation, say… when a lead character reacts angrily to two gay men kissing or something to that effect. That’s blatant hateful homophobic behavior which does not deserve screen time. Again, I have not seen Rush Hour 3 yet, so I shouldn’t even have a right to defend the scene in question.
But what shocks me the most about this is that Brett felt the need to deflect the situation by saying the same experience happened to him personally. How does that help your argument? You’re not homophobic but the character in your movie is?
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Talk has already begun about a possible fourth Rush Hour movie, further proving that their must not be a God, or at least one who cares about good movies. Director Brett Ratner introduced Rush Hour 3 at the Mann’s Chinese Theater premiere on Tuesday with a joke: “I’d like to welcome everyone to the first production meeting of ‘Rush Hour 4.'” But after the laughs subsided, and the film played, New Line Cinema Co-Chairman and Co-Ceo told Variety that he’d “love” to do another “Rush Hour”. That’s never a good sign, considering he’s one of the big wigs that greenlights the production slate.
But another sequel will depends on how well Rush Hour 3 does at the box office. But considering a movie like Wild Hogs was able to sucker the American public out of $168.2 million, I’m sure Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker will have no problem. Unfortunately, mediocre movies that appeal to the lowest common denominator, while remaining family friendly, tend to make lots of money. It’s a surprise to me that Tim Allen isn’t the highest paid actor in hollywood.
It took three years for Rush Hour 2, and six years for Rush Hour 3 – let’s hope that it takes at least 12 years for a Rush Hour 4 to hit the big screens. Actually, let’s hope that a Rush Hour 4 doesn’t ever hit the big screen. That’s probably the best possible scenario. On a good note, if we can keep hack director Brett Ratnerbusy with the Rush Hour franchise, that at the very least means he won’t have time to ruin any more X-Men films.
I’ve never really cared for the Rush Hour movies, or director Brett Ratner for that matter. I mean, the first one was fun, but did we really need two sequels? But someone, somewhere is contributing to the series’ box office success. For those people, I bring you this post (it probably helps that it’s also a slow news day). After the jump you will find over 20 new photos from Rush Hour 3.
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New Line has released the movie poster for Rush Hour 3. Yawn.