EXCLUSIVE: Paramount and MGM are setting Big Bad Wolves helmers Aharon Keshales & Navot Papushado to direct Bruce Willis in Death Wish, the revamp of the Charles Bronson vigilante franchise that is adapted from the Brian Garfield novel. Production will begin by the summer, I hear. Paramount released the original 1974 hit in conjunction with the Dino De Laurentiis Company, and MGM ended up with those rights, which is why the studios are teamed. Roger Birnbaum is producing.
They’ve been trying to get this one off the ground for several years and have a script that was started by Joe Carnahan (who was once going to direct), with subsequent drafts by Dan Gilroy and Graham Yost. The new take hews closely to the book, about an architect whose life is destroyed by a violent crime against his wife and daughter. Frustrated that the perpetrators are not held to pay for the violence and degradation these thugs inflicted on his family, the architect takes to the streets and begins dispatching bad guys himself. As Willis prepares for another Die Hard, he’s got the chops to make this interesting enough to launch another franchise.
The Israeli filmmaking team made their debut with Rabies and then followed with 2013’s Big Bad Wolves, a violent, high-octane thriller that became a cult favorite. They are repped by WME.