EXCLUSIVE: New Line and director Tim Story have chosen Jessie T. Usher to play the progeny of detective John Shaft in Son of Shaft, which is gearing up to begin production later this fall. Samuel L. Jackson is negotiating a deal to return to reprise the role he played in the John Singleton-directed reboot of the Gordon Parks-directed 1971 action classic. Also returning, per sources, will be Richard Roundtree, who starred in the original film and returned in the 2000 film, in which Jackson’s character played his nephew. The script for the new film is by Kenya Barris.
The studio and filmmakers searched for months to find the right young actor for the splashy role, before deciding the right guy is Usher. Usher’s biggest role to date came in Independence Day: Resurgence. He returns as the lead of the Starz series Survivor’s Remorse, with the fourth season beginning August 20. He will play the son of the detective, who, after long being estranged from his father, finds himself teamed up with him. The young man is an FBI agent, a cyber expert, and the partnership with dad is an uneasy collision of old school meets new school.
CAA and MGMT Entertainment rep Usher. The new Shaft film is produced by Davis Entertainment’s John Davis and Barris, the black-ish creator. Story is repped by UTA and Barris by CAA and Principato-Young. Jackson is ICM Partners and Anonymous Content and Stone Manners Salsners Agency and Patrick McMinn Management.