Training Day, CBS’ present-day reimagining of Antoine Fuqua’s acclaimed 2001 feature that starred Denzel Washington and Ethan Hawke, could become a true sequel, featuring the surviving main characters from the movie.
I have learned that Hawke has been approached to reprise his role as Jake Hoyt in the TV series, which hails from Fuqua, Jerry Bruckheimer and Warner Bros. TV. It is unclear at the moment whether it will happen or not as talks are ongoing. If he does, it would be for a supporting/recurring role, though I hear there was an idea for Hawke to potentially star in the series.
The film starred Washington as rogue narcotics detective Alonzo Harris and Hawke as his rookie cop partner Hoyt. The TV series adaptation, written by Will Beall and directed by Fuqua, is set 15 years later and centers on an idealistic young African-American police officer, Kyle, who is given an assignment by the Deputy Chief to go undercover with an elite squad of the LAPD and take down a morally ambiguous Caucasian detective, gaining the trust of the seasoned cop by becoming his new partner.
I’ve learned that there were two versions of the pilot script. In one, the corrupt older detective is Jake Hoyt. It was written to gauge Hawke’s interest in toplining the series. I hear that was not something Hawke — coming off an Oscar nomination for Boyhood — was interested in pursuing, so the alternate version of the script was greenlighted to pilot. In it, the rogue cop is a new character, Frank, while the Deputy Chief is Hoyt. (The pilot addresses the fate of Washington’s Alonzo, who was killed at the end of the movie.)
I hear Hawke has expressed interest in making occasional guest starring appearances, similar to the way Bradley Cooper is reprising his role from the Limitless movie in the CBS drama series between doing features. I hear the way the Deputy Chief character was conceived, it involves more regular presence on the show, so the two sides are currently far apart. But talks continue, and the role is still earmarked for Hawke. The casting breakdown for the pilot released this week features all other characters, including Kyle and Frank, but not the Deputy Chief.
Hawke has a very strong relationship with Fuqua, who is behind the series reboot. (It was Fuqua’s idea to do the neo-noir crime thriller as a TV series.) Hawke earned the first of two acting Oscar nominations for Training Day and also did his only TV pilot to date with Fuqua, headlining the 2011 Fox drama Exit Strategy, which Fuqua directed (it didn’t go to series). Hawke also is starring in Fuqua’s next movie, The Magnificent Seven.
Hawke has been keeping very busy on the feature side, and just signed on to star in the thriller 24 Hours to Live, which will be directed by Brian Smrz.