EXCLUSIVE: Martin Campbell is in talks to direct the now untitled film that will star Jackie Chan, with STX Entertainment eyeing a fall production start. This is the one that had been called The Foreigner, based on the Stephen Leather novel The Chinaman. It will get a new title. While everyone is talking about the financial turmoil that has Relativity circling the drain, Campbell’s pending deal here was made possible by that company’s difficulties. Campbell early on had been involved in developing The Foreigner but the helmer of Casino Royale, Edge Of Darkness and Green Lantern left to instead direct Relativity’s Hunter Killer. STX in turn had discussions with a few directors that included Nick Cassavetes. When Hunter Killer became uncertain because of Relativity’s difficulties, Campbell returned. Deals are being negotiated right now.
This is a strategically important film for STX, which has received substantial slate financing from China; cracking that country is a priority. Chan is one of the most beloved action stars to come out of China. He will play a humble restaurant owner in London’s Chinatown who is forced to push his moral and physical boundaries to track down the group of rogue Irish terrorists responsible for the death of his beloved daughter after the justice system fails him. The book was adapted by David Marconi and Peter Buchman. Wayne Godfrey is producing.
Campbell is repped by CAA.