It was only a matter of time before badass Indonesian fight film The Raid was remade here in America, and as announced earlier this month, Joe Carnahan (The Grey) will be the man in the director’s chair for that remake. But if you’re afraid of Carnahan simply putting an American spin on the 2011 film that you love so much, prepare to have those fears curbed.
Speaking with Collider, Carnahan and star Frank Grillo (The Purge: Election Year) just dug deep into their vision for a “remake” of The Raid, revealing that the plot will center on the relationship between two brothers forced to fight for their lives. They describe the film as a passion project that will be made without studio guidance, with the budget set at under $20 million.
Carnahan teased the differences between his film and Gareth Evans’ original:
It’s [about] heightening elements of The Raid that were already there. I’m taking these story elements and kind of weaponizing them. Just giving them a shot of steroids, because again everything is about zagging—where The Raid zigged, we’ll zag.
He also promised that the violence will not be toned down, and that the characters won’t be superhuman fighting machines but rather ordinary men fighting through the pain:
There’s a level of brutality, a level of violence. If our movie felt like the knife fight between Adam Goldberg and the German in Saving Private Ryan the entirety of the movie, then we’ve done exactly what we need to do. Something that grueling and tough.
So why adapt the property, rather than make something totally new? Grillo explains:
First of all, we’re not the Hollywood version of anything. We come through the back door all the time. I’m not Tom Cruise. I’m not the Hollywood version. I’m not knocking Tom Cruise, but he’s Tom Cruise. He gets to do whatever he wants. So my point is we don’t have to do this. We can do anything we want to do. We want to do this because there’s something we see that we want to show to American audiences, and audiences globally. Many people have not seen The Raid.
Carnahan’s The Raid will be set in Caracas, Venezuela, and he’s currently writing the script. Both he and Grillo want to get rolling as soon as possible.