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The Raid is getting remade, and, as you'd expect, it's not going to be a one-to-one comparison. Certain changes will need to be made to adapt the property for Hollywood, as suggested in the reported casting of Taylor Kitsch in the lead role (though co-star Frank Grillo is a martial artist, and is awesome). But now news has come around that the property is actually getting a full facelift - according to director Patrick Hughes. Are you ready for The Raid By A Dozen?
Grantland sat down with The Raid director Patrick Hughes, who revealed that he's eyeing an ensemble focus for the new film, with "12 integral roles" within the film's ensemble - akin to "Black Hawk Down and Zero Dark Thirty." This is an awfully bizarre way to over-think things, but hey, maybe this just means twelve times the ass-kicking.
The Raid: Redemption, for those of you who haven't seen it (and that's a lot of you, since the movie wasn't a massive hit in America), follows a SWAT team as they find themselves locked in an apartment complex run by an evil villain. Most of these guys, it's worth noting, are not badasses, so they fall quickly. But Rama (Iko Uwais) knows a thing or two about kicking some ass, so he manages to fight his way to the top, side-scroller-style. The movie is mostly a vehicle for Uwais to show off his skill, but it also teams him with such impressive physical performers as Joe Taslim (of Fast And Furious 6) and Yayan Ruhian. Everyone else is just target practice: you don't get a ton of nuanced character work in The Raid.
It's possible that The Raid remake will take some cues from the sequel to the original, The Raid: Berandal. In that film, the action is opened up considerably, creating a crime epic where Rama becomes a pawn of some crooked cops and thrust into a massive gang war between bloodthirsty mob families. In that film, alliances are tested, crosses are doubled, and entire bloodlines are annihilated. Much of Berandal is a completely new world for fans of The Raid: Redemption, so perhaps this American film is making the shift from part one to part two more organic, teasing out elements that might appear in an eventual American The Raid 2.
Or maybe Hughes and company are just making a big men-on-a-mission film that mixes the spirit of modern martial arts movies with classics like The Great Escape and The Magnificent Seven. Of course, that didn't really work for Hughes the first time around – his American debut, The Expendables 3, is probably the worst of a very bad series, and it's currently dying a quick death at the box office. Studio Screen Gems is known for making movies quick and cheap however, so this time at least Hughes won't have Sly looking over his shoulder and giving him notes.