Director Joe Carnahan (“The Grey,” “The A-Team”) took to Instagram Wednesday to say he will helm an English-language version of the 2012 cult favorite “The Raid: Redemption.” Filmed in Indonesia, with subtitles, Gareth Evans’ blood-spattered thriller follows an elite SWAT team battling thugs all over a 30-story highrise. “It wouldn’t be a remake. It would be a reimagining,” Carnahan says in a video from his couch as he watches the original with tough-guy actor Frank Grillo. They talk of moving the action to Caracas, Venezuela.
But when fans objected on social media, Carnahan was ready. “You can’t remake ‘The Raid,’ guys. It’s a fantastic film,” he tweeted. “So, ask yourselves why would we be doing it, unless we had something really special.”
Disney has hired its second female director ever to take on one of its movies budgeted at over $100 million. Niki Caro (“Whale Rider,” “McFarland, USA”) will direct the live-action remake of “Mulan,” says The Hollywood Reporter. (Ava DuVernay is the first woman to direct a Disney blockbuster with the upcoming “A Wrinkle in Time.”) Hoping for cultural authenticity, the studio had tried for an Asian director and approached the likes of Ang Lee, who declined. But the movie will have an Asian executive producer and Asian consultants. It’s set for November 2018.
R2-D2, No. 2
Following last summer’s death of legendary actor Kenny Baker, the “Star Wars” franchise needed another little person to play R2-D2. Enter Jimmy Vee, who has appeared in the “Harry Potter” movies and “Doctor Who.” He says Baker taught him a few tricks for playing the plucky droid. Vee’s work will be seen in “Star Wars: The Last Jedi,” coming in December.