Bad Lieutenant remake in development
It seems there is another remake in early script development at the moment, and that's Abel Ferrara's Bad Lieutenant.
Yes, the film which starred Harvey Keitel as the disillusioned, drug taking, sex crazed, and slightly unhinged cop, which was nominated for the Film Independent's Spirit Awards and won Keitel a Spirit Award for Best Male Lead, is being adapted for a more modern, post 9/11 New York.
According to the L.A. Times the new version of Bad Lieutenant has a working title of Bad Lieutenant '08, which at least acknowledges where it's coming from rather than some remakes which pretend to be something new, reinventions and reimaginations.
William Finkelstein is the man charged with reinventing the character for a more modern film, and his previous credits seem to suggest a solid match as he has written for TV shows such as NYPD Blue, Murder One and Law & Order.
According to the story Finkelstein is bringing the character back to life with a backstory of drug addiction, the showing of his promotion to Sergeant, the drug related murders of five illegal immigrants and a name for the character. Other than that they say that the drugs, sex, stealing and gambling are still going to play a major part in the story.
Finelstein does show that this version may not have the same impact as the original did when it showed such NC-17 content so vividly.
"I don't know that the same sorts of things that caused us to sit up and take notice 15 years ago are necessarily gonna have the same effect now."
Something I agree with. We've seen it before and it sounds as though they are going to try and update it and reinterpret it rather than try and out do the original. That is probably the best idea and would lead to the better film. He also has some wise words about those so negative to remakes and revisits to existing characters.
"There are certain characters that are part of our literature and they will be revisited -- that's just the nature of it. There's a difference between appreciating something and putting it in amber."
You know it is fair to say that there are many good remakes, reinventions and revists to existing characters, but the more visible and promoted films in this category tend to yield the poorer versions, and it's these that the public remember, giving rise to the feeling that remakes are just no good. Still, all that aside. Bad Lieutenant remade? I find it hard to believe it will move to production.