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Planet B Boy, Benson Lee’s feature film adaptation of his own award-winning documentary of the same name, has added some high-profile men to its cast.
Josh Holloway, Laz Alonso, Josh Peck and fleet-footed pop star Chris Brown have signed on to the production, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Like Lee’s doc, the new Planet B Boy will be set in the world of international breakdancing. Unlike Lee’s doc, this new story will play up a classic underdog tale about a struggling breakdancing team who must rise up to a challenge and persevere in the Battle of the Year International Championships in France. So it’s like Warrior with the worm, or The Karate Kid with pop-lock and beatbox instead of “wax, on, wax off.”
Screen Gems set up this project in 2009 after seeing Lee’s documentary and realizing that while breakdancing faded in the U.S. decades ago, it remained extremely popular around the world. Brin Hill and Chris Parker developed a screenplay off of Lee’s doc, following the blueprint of similar rise-up dramas. THR says Planet B Boy will begin shooting in Los Angeles before moving on to location shots in Montpellier, France.
And why not? Craig Brewer’s Footloose brought dancing back to the big screen, TV audiences can’t get enough of Dancing With the Stars, the Step Up movies make decent money, and Hollywood’s enamored with retro, so this might be the best time to bring back breakdancing, which was enormous in the 1980s. Maybe some filmmaker will blow the dust off of Breakin’ and its gaudy sequel, Breakin’ 2: Electric Boogaloo because those films sucked and remakes can only drastically improve them.