John Travolta has played his fair share of characters who range from morally ambiguous to outright evil and dangerous, and now he's signed on for a role that will see him heading back into the "lunatic" range of the performing scale. He's heading back to television for the first time since playing Robert Shapiro in FX's American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson in 2016, and it's for a part on Kevin Hart's new show, which is going to be very different from the last time we saw Travolta on TV.
According to a new report from Variety, John Travolta has signed up to play a significant role in Kevin Hart’s new comedy-action series Die Hart. The show will see Hart playing a fictionalized version of himself, but who’s fed up with only getting to be the funny sidekick in action films. Hart finally gets the opportunity to play the lead in a big budget action movie, but he will only nab the role if he completes training at “the world’s greatest action star school,” which is run by Travolta’s unbalanced character.
Kevin Hart will see himself pushed to his very limit (both physically and emotionally), not only by Travolta’s as yet unnamed character, but also by a hardcore rival action star school student. He’ll then be forced to withstand several crazily excessive action sequences and face all of his fears to try and finally make his action star dreams come true.
Die Hart will be executive produced by Hart, with Candice Wilson, Bryan Smiley and Jeff Clanagan producing. Tripper Clancy (Stuber) and Derek Kolstad (John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum) will write the series, which will see Eric Appel (Brooklyn Nine-Nine) direct. Die Hart already has a home at Quibi, the short-form streamer which will debut on April 6.
If you’re a fan of Kevin Hart’s comedy specials, you’ll probably enjoy knowing that the idea for Die Hart comes from the opening sequence of his 2016 special Kevin Hart: What Now, where he acts out a funny version of a James Bond-esq movie, with him as the lead who's imbued with all the ass-kicking skills we’d expect.
John Travolta seems like a solid addition to the cast. We know he’s capable of bringing in some amazing performances when he plays a good guy. But, the version of Travolta we usually get when he goes bad is something that’s frequently over the top and gloriously batty. It sounds like that John Travolta is exactly the one that Kevin Hart and his team were looking for. Just look at the wondrous spectacle he made of himself in The Fanatic last year:
I mean, you are INTO a scene when you start to drool and 90% of your dialogue can’t even be understood, right? Actually, if Die Hart can just figure out a way to make sure that John Travolta plays this character in the show, I might go ahead and get myself a Quibi subscription. Watching that performance / wig combo in action is no joke, friends.
Die Hart is one of several shows that have been announced for Quibi, all with big names attached like Zac Efron, Tyra Banks, Idris Elba, Chrissy Teigen, and Don Cheadle. We don't know right now how many episodes of Die Hart we'll get or when it will premiere, but stay tuned to CInemaBlend for the latest!