Many of us grew up watching Renny Harlin’s action movies like Cliffhanger, Die Hard 2, and The Adventures of Ford Fairlane. It would be several more years before Jackie Chan was properly introduced to America with the U.S. release of Rumble in the Bronx. The two represent quite different approaches to action, with Harlin embodying the explosive bombastic American style and Chan his own unique brand of comedic martial arts.
Harlin directed Chan’s latest movie, Skiptrace. Chan plays Hong Kong detective Benny Chan, who is mismatched with an American gambler Connor Watts (Johnny Knoxville). Chan has to get Watts back to Hong Kong, but their journey will take them from Russia, to the mainland, through the desert and the cities, all while being chased by bad guys led by Dasha (Eve Torres). Some of Chan’s trademark set pieces include a fight in a Russian nesting doll factory, and another scene has him singing “Rolling in the Deep.”
We spoke with Harlin by phone out of his Beijing office, because he’s staying put there. I had actually corresponded with Harlin on Twitter last year after the New Beverly Cinema in Los Angeles showed his maligned pirate film Cutthroat Island. 20 years later it finally played to a friendly crowd. We started out talking about the Cutthroat Island screening, and discussed Jackie Chan, American vs. Chinese filmmaking, and more. Read More »
Back in the late 1990s and early 2000s, Hong Kong action star Jackie Chan became a huge star in the United States. His incredible stunt work caught the attention of Hollywood and action fans alike, and a handful of his movies received a domestic release in theaters, albeit with dubbed dialogue. Shortly thereafter, Chan was starring in Hollywood films like Rush Hour with Chris Tucker, Shanghai Noon with Owen Wilson and even his own starring vehicle, The Tuxedo. Now he’s back in a movie that feels like it got lost in a couch cushion back in 2001.
Skiptrace is a new action comedy from Die Hard 2 and Cliffhanger director Renny Harlin, and it puts Jackie Chan into the lead role alongside an American actor for comedic relief. This time it’s Jackass star Johnny Knoxville starring alongside Jackie Chan, and as you’ll see in the trailer that just debuted, the two couldn’t be a more mismatched pair. Watch the Skiptrace trailer after the jump. Read More »
“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.” This is what I wrote on the site exactly seven years ago as New Line Cinema Co-Chairman and Co-Ceo told trade reports that he’d “love” to do another “Rush Hour”. Well its been seven years and it hasn’t happened yet, which is good news. But it looks like the studio wants to make Rush Hour 4. Jackie Chan says the studio wants to make another sequel but they don’t even have a script, and until they do — he’s not interested.
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Jackie Chan isn’t yet ready to become Expendable, because he’s busy making his own big action films. One project he’s been developing is called Skiptrace, and features Jackie and Seann William Scott in a globe-trotting action buddy comedy. Now Renny Harlin (Die Hard 2, The Long Kiss Goodnight) will direct the film, with a shoot planned for later this summer. Fan Bingbing (Iron Man 3, X-Men: Days of Future Past) will also appear.
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When Jackie Chan has an idea for a movie, that movie gets made. That’s certainly the case with Skiptrace, which is based on idea from the martial arts icon. Chan will star as Hong Kong detective whose daughter (X-Men: Days of Future Past‘s Fan Bingbing) gets abducted and the only person who can help is a wiseass American gambler, who’ll be played by Seann William Scott.
That’s all well and good, but the coolest news here is the director. Sam Fell, who directed Paranorman and The Tale of Despereaux, will make his live-action debut on the film. Read More »