Some reboots are destined to fail, while others manage to make a name for themselves in no time flat. And then there are those reboots that seem destined to spend their lives in limbo, transferring from studio to studio, waiting to either happen or not. One of the most infamous examples of a franchise in serious limbo is Fletch, which has transferred from Miramax to Warner Bros, and most recently to Relativity. With their impending bankruptcy forcing their hand, the studio is shuffling their deck and looking for a partner to help them play the Fletch card once and for all.
According to a report from The Hollywood Reporter, a new Fletch film could be part of a potential deal that would keep Relativity active through corporate restructuring and the recruitment of some new investing blood. The plan so far is to keep Masterminds and Kidnap on the studio's release schedule, with an eye towards keeping projects in the development pipeline. This would keep the money flowing and the studio busy, and so far the only real viable lead is the rumored production of The Crow reboot, which is rumored to have already been shuttered for the time being. According to Relativity faithfuls, Fletch is another candidate that they're keen to use in order to keep the wheels to recovery greased.
Don't pop the champagne just yet, as there's one more classic Hollywood wrinkle in these fledgling plans for the series that directors such as Kevin Smith and Bill Lawrence have tried -and failed – to revive. Namely, the true successor to the project's rights are in question, as one faction says that Relativity owns half of the project, so long as it puts the film into pre-production by the end of the year. Meanwhile, other sources are saying that the rights to the film went out the door the same time Jane Got A Gun was released from Relativity's slate of projects, as both shared involvement with the Boies/Schiller Film Group. Another source states that Fletch is moving forward without Relativity.
Considering the clock may be ticking, both on Relativity's supposed ownership of the series, as well as their viability as a functioning film studio, a deal may have to be struck soon if we're to expect a Fletch film to save the day. Looking at the situation from an outsider's perspective, it doesn't sound like a bad idea for Relativity to either offer a straight up buyout on the property, or to offer to provide a bigger share to the Boies/Schiller Film Group in exchange for a spot at the table. But if the latter sources' information proves accurate, perhaps the film will move ahead without Relativity.
With the nostalgia wave looking to burst at any minute, and a lackluster start to Vacation, aka " that other Chevy Chase franchise" resurrected from the dead, Fletch looks like it has both its greatest time to succeed and its most vulnerable period to fail at this very moment. Whatever the outcome, you can bet it will be swift and we'll be here to cover it as it happens.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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