It's been 17 years since Shaft has last been in theaters, and his return has been long overdue. Much like the 2000 project, some new members have been added to the family that bears the name that launched a successful 1970s franchise. With Independence Day: Resurgence's Jessie Usher playing the newest, youngest Shaft (the son of Samuel L. Jackson's returning character), his mother is the last pivotal role to be cast for this family affair. And she's officially been cast as of today, with Regina Hall taking that spot in the roster for Son of Shaft.
News came down that Regina Hall would be playing the mother of Usher's young lead in this latest installment, with her character being the former love interest to Samuel L. Jackson's second generation incarnation of the Shaft franchise. This latest trip back to the franchise will, courtesy of New Line, see Richard Roundtree filling the rest of the cinematic family tree. He's still the original Shaft, who is now the great-uncle of the crime-fighting family.
This news couldn't have come at a better time, as Regina Hall had a pretty fantastic summer, seeing as her ensemble comedy Girls Trip made quite a splash at the box office. With $138.6 million of international grosses in the bank, the $19 million budgeted film is the definition of a runaway hit, and along with that fine result comes a natural boost to the cast's profiles. Of course, it also helps that this summer's comedy smash was written by black-ish creator Kenya Barris, and Barris also happens to be the co-writer and producer on the Son of Shaft film. Landing a gig that could become a potential future franchise is a fantastic way to cash in on this past summer's success, so if things go the right way, Hall will be a busy woman in the years to come. Besides, why break up a winning actor and writer duo?
Further details on Son of Shaft were also released by Variety, which also reveals the story will center around Jessie Usher's younger Shaft, who's not exactly the eye candy to all the chicks that his great uncle, or even his father were. However, he is a young and promising FBI agent, who is about to engage in the family business of detective work, after a friend has died under mysterious circumstances.
As noted before, this is the second attempt at trying to revive the Shaft series, as the 2000 film was once positioned to give Samuel L. Jackson the keys to the kingdom. Unfortunately for those involved with that incarnation, the film never caught on as it was intended, but with Kenya Barris and Regina Hall's stars shining quite brightly in Hollywood at the moment, as well as the prestige of Jackson and Richard Roundtree being installed safely in the cast, this new film is about ready to get folks talkin' about Shaft again.