I hope you're having a good Friday, because depending on your opinion of reboots, you're either about to have a really good one or a really bad one. It was just announced that Nu Image/Millennium Films are plotting to reboot the action franchise Rambo with an all-new star in the title role. Series star Sylvester Stallone will not return as the title character (not that he wanted to).
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the reboot will continue the franchise's confusing title pattern and will be called Rambo: New Blood. It's unknown if Stallone will be involved in the project as a producer (or have a cameo), but a younger actor will take up the mantle. The producers are comparing the character to being similar to James Bond, presumably meaning that they can cast anyone as Rambo whenever they need to and people will just shrug and say "okay." Brooks McLaren will write the screenplay, while Ariel Vernon is tapped to direct.
Brooks McLaren doesn't have much to credit him with just yet, but he seems to have experience in the action genre. He first came onto the scene with the screenplay for How it Ends, a post-apocalyptic survival film that made the 2010 Black List. One of his in-development projects is the action thriller Line of Sight, which is being developed by Ben Affleck for Warner Bros -- which gives McLaren some good street cred. Ariel Vernon is arguably best known for directing The Iceman, a crime drama with Michael Shannon. His latest film, Criminal, premiered just this year starring Kevin Costner as a brain-swapped Ryan Reynolds alongside Gal Gadot.
Based on the book First Blood by David Morrell, the first Rambo burst into theaters in 1982 starring Stallone as a struggling veteran. Despite delivering the usual high doses of adrenaline and gun fights, the movie offered a surprising look at the effect of war on Vietnam veterans. The sequel, Rambo: First Blood Part II, was a massive success and cemented the character as an action icon. He would go on to hit the big screen again in the simpler titled Rambo III before Stallone returned to the role for what is now the last time in 2008's Rambo.
The project is still in the infancy of development, so there are no details on the plot. Assuming that the point of the reboot is to set a younger Rambo in a modern time, then it could aim to replace the Vietnam War with, say, the Iraq War for a more relevant commentary. That COULD be good, but it's all up in the air at this point.
No matter what the story is, I hope that it hires Andy Dwyer from Parks and Recreation, as the narrator because of his excellent commentary on the original.
There's no word on a release date for Rambo: New Blood, but keep checking here at CinemaBlend, and we'll keep you updated.