As the Paul Walker-less Fast & Furious franchise rolls forward into what will assuredly be even more ridiculous territories, director Justin Lin is busy attaching himself to roughly every fifth film project that major studios are announcing. The latest pic he’s now said to direct is a crime-heavy thriller called Times Square that Focus Features acquired specifically for Lin to take over. Catch up with me again in five years to see if this flick ever actually gets made.
Times Square will be produced by the trifecta of Chernin Entertainment, Perfect Storm Entertainment and Far Hills Pictures. Chernin’s Mike LaRocca brought in the script, according to Deadline, which landed on the Black List a couple of years ago. It was written by newcomers Jacob Rubin and Taylor Materne, who served as an executive producer on the documentary Corman’s World and Peter Glanz’s upcoming comedic drama The Longest Week.
Should Lin take the job, he’d be telling the story of a young man making a life for himself in 1980s New York City, in the onset of Times Square’s transition from squalid and unsavory to a spic-and-spanned corporate logo-zone. The man was raised during his formative years by a neighborhood crime boss, and when a secret from his past shows up to haunt him, his loyalties are torn between the boss and an ex-cop who swore to protect him.
Sounds like a solid narrative, and one that will hopefully adopt a production design that makes it resemble Taxi Driver or Mean Streets, and not Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve... though I wouldn’t mind seeing Ryan Seacrest show up for a cameo where he gets smothered by his own smugness.
It’ll probably be a while before we ever get a look at Times Square, as Lin is next set to join Jeremy Renner for another action-friendly entry in the Bourne franchise, as Universal already set an August 2015 release date for it. He’s currently working on the CBS pilot Scorpion, which centers on a group of super-geniuses and stars Robert Patrick and Katherine McPhee.
On the list of back-burner projects, he’s somehow still attached to direct John Ridley’s script L.A. Riots, which he got attached to in 2012, as well as a big budget take on The Shaolin Temple, a sci-fi thriller called Hibernation, a Patrick Lee novel adaptation, and a feature take on the documentary The Battered Bastards of Baseball. All in a day’s work, I guess.
But until we get to see any of those flicks, we’ll always have Vin Diesel flying through the air in Fast & Furious 6.