EXCLUSIVE: Paramount Pictures is giving a face lift to Face/Off, the 1997 John Woo-directed action thriller that starred John Travolta and Nicolas Cage. The studio will reboot the film, with new cast. Oren Uziel has been set to write the script, and Neal Moritz will produce and David Permut will be executive producer.
Given a fairly preposterous-sounding premise, the original film was a wild ride. Travolta played FBI agent Sean Archer, who is obsessed with catching a homicidal sociopath named Castor Troy, who is responsible for killing the fed’s son. The agent undergoes facial transplant surgery and takes the mug of his nemesis so he can be sent to prison to find out a bomb’s whereabouts and stop an attack. The plan goes awry when the bad guy wakes up and takes the face of the FBI agent. Soon, the new-faced Castor visits the agent with the villainous face and takes glee in taunting him, telling him that the face surgeons have been killed, that the good guy is stuck with the face he hates most, and that the villain is going home to bed his wife and take over his home life. It escalates into a series of choreographed action sequences, and by the time it was over, the film became Woo’s biggest original hit with a $245 million global gross. Mike Werb and Michael Colleary wrote the original.
Uziel’s credits range from 22 Jump Street to The Cloverfield Paradox and Sonic the Hedgehog. Deal gives Paramount the opportunity to exploit its library, which it has done with Mission: Impossible film series and the upcoming Top Gun: Maverick.
Writ Large and Myman Greenspan Fox rep Uziel.