Snake Plissken might be returning to the silver screen. But chances are he won’t be played by Kurt Russell this time around. John Carpenter’s Escape From New York first introduced the former-Special Forces operator turned criminal as he was sentenced to New York maximum security prison, which was the entire island of Manhatten surrounded by an impenetrable wall. The prison itself had fallen into anarchy with the inmates led by the Duke of New York (Isaac Hayes). At the same time, Air Force One was hijacked and crashed into Manhatten. The president himself, played by Donald Pleasance, survived but was then captured by the Duke. Snake was offered a full pardon if he rescued the President who was in possession of technical information that would solidify the United States position as the dominant world power, however. After 24 hours the technical information would become useless. To crank up the tension another notch, Snake was implanted with a microscopic device that would detonate at the end of the 24 hour period.
Snake later returned in Escape From LA, which was basically a rehash of the first film that saw snake sent to the island of Los Angeles which had broken off from the coast of California after a major earthquake. The city then became a haven for criminals and the vilest people of society. Snake was sent in to retrieve a disk which controlled several EMP satellites from the First Daughter who had betrayed her country and sought refuge in Los Angeles. The film itself was horrible and the character of Snake dwindled in popularity after the film’s release.
According to The Wrap, Fox is looking to hit the reset button offering Snake a chance at redemption. Fox has brought on Luther creator Neal Cross to pen the script with John Carpenter serving as an executive producer. The film will be a major departure from the original as it will swap the dystopian setting of New York for a futuristic New York that is automated by an artificial intelligence who appears as a young ethnically ambiguous woman named April. The reboot also takes the concept of a criminal-controlled city and turns it on its head, putting the world outside of New York in chaos. In this version, one out of every seventy-five people is either a refugee, internally displaced, or seeking asylum.
Rather than having a defacto leader of prisoners serve as the villain, instead, there will be the character of Thomas Newton, the heir to an agrochemical and biotech corporation. And rather than having 24 hours, Snake will have 11 hours to infiltrate New York and bring in Newton alive. But an Escape film needs another element to crank up the tension and drive the plot. Instead of Snake being implanted with a microscopic explosive, this time a major hurricane called Superstorm Ellery is headed for New York.
The film will also give Snake the first name of Robert, becoming Robert “Snake” Pliskin. But that’s just a bit too much exposition no one will care about in the end.
The reboot itself does sound promising in that it’s not a total rehash of the original. Having a talented writer such as Neal Cross on board signals Fox actually cares about the quality of the film and isn’t only concerned about making a disingenuous cash grab.
Who will play Snake remains a mystery but Charlie Hunnam is rumored to be attached.
Currently, the reboot does not have a release date.
SOURCE: THE WRAP