The 2011 Indonesian action flick The Raid has been one of the most praised action movies of the decade, not to mention the entire millennium in general. But because nothing’s sacred in Hollywood, the world is getting it again, but this time from Hollywood.
XYZ Films posted a video on their Twitter page at 1:17 p.m. featuring producer/writer/director Joe Carnahan (The Grey, The A-Team, Smokin’ Aces) and actor Frank Grillo (Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Purge: Election Year) discussing the original film and announcing the decision to remake the movie. Carnahan then announced on his own Twitter today that he will be directing the remake. In his announcement that came at 1:40 p.m., Carnahan said that the remake will “hew closer in tone & feel to The Grey and Narc” and that the original’s writer/director, Gareth Evans, is “producing alongside & has given us his full blessing.” When fans cried heresy, Carnahan tweeted that the remake would be “a reimagining of the same scenario. Everybody take a deep breath. We won’t disappoint you. You can’t remake ‘The Raid,’ guys. It’s a fantastic film. So, ask yourselves why would we be doing it, unless we had something really special.”
Carnahan is certainly no stranger to remakes, as evidence by his 2010 remake of the hit 80s tv show The A-Team. He’s also known for his hyper-stylized, fast-paced, gritty action movies like Narc, Smokin’ Aces, and the Liam Neeson vehicle The Grey (surprisingly one of Neeson’s better-received post-Taken films). Lately, he’s been working in TV directing episodes of The Blacklist and State of Affairs. He’s also got another action movie sequel/remake in the tank, with the rumored Bad Boys for Life set for 2018.
On the other hand, Carnahan certainly has an ideal actor in mind to fill the shoes of the almighty Iko Uwais. Grillo made a solid impression as Brock Rumlow/Crossbones in the last two Captain America movies and as a solo star in the more expanded Purge sequels. He’s capable with fight scenes and gunplay with enough charm to pass as a leading action hero. He could certainly use a hit action movie with him as the main lead.
It will certainly be a difficult task to have a remake of The Raid be relevant an unique from its original. The martial art of Pencak Silat was something so groundbreaking to action movies with its brutality and accuracy, it’s hard to see what else could be brought to the table. However, one comment complaint the original film had is a weak storyline. If Carnahan plans on building some real human characters and a compelling story into the mix, he might be able to justify this remake.