It looks like Will Smith and Martin Lawrence will be reuniting for a new “Bad Boys” film, after all.
After what seems like years, and years, of false starts and delays, Variety is reporting that Sony is about to give the coveted greenlight to the upcoming “Bad Boys For Life.” While no plot details are given, the film would see the triumphant return of the two Miami Police Department officers played by Smith and Lawrence as they tackle a brand-new adventure.
The report also claims that Sony is so ready to get the ball rolling on this reboot/sequel to the hugely-popular “Bad Boys” franchise, that the studio is shooting for an early-2019 start date, in anticipation of hitting a potential January 2020 release date.
While Sony wouldn’t comment specifically, Variety was able to speak with Columbia Pictures president Sanford Panitch about the possibility of a new “Bad Boys” film and another upcoming reboot of a popular franchise — “21 Jump Street.”
“If we’re going to make another ‘Bad Boys’ after 15 years, it’s got to be next-level great,” said Panitch.
He continued by complimenting the current directors attached, Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah, best known for their work on “Snowfall.” “These guys are amazing,” he said. “They loved the first movies, but they’re not afraid to change things up.”
As mentioned, Panitch does talk a little more about the proposed all-female spin-off of “21 Jump Street,” which we first learned about in 2016. After ideas were thrown around for a “Men in Black”/’Jump Street’ crossover with Phil Lord and Chris Miller attached, Sony decided to move on with reboots/sequels for both franchises. Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson are headlining the in-production “Men in Black” film.
And instead of rehashing “21 Jump Street,” Panitch says they wanted to try something new and fresh. “We think that there’s something fun about keeping that irreverent spirit of ‘Jump Street,’ but maybe having it be told through a female undercover cop point-of-view,” said Panitch. “We’ve had enough male buddy comedies. The script is really funny and has a freshness to it.”
The executive confirms that “22 Jump Street” writer Rodney Rothman will write and direct the upcoming reboot, making his directorial debut.
Panitch explains why Sony seems to be banking on the new trend of reboot-quels that seems to be all the rage, with “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” earning almost a billion dollars. Now, with ‘MiB,’ “Bad Boys For Life,” the female ’21 Jump Street,’ and the upcoming “Charlie’s Angels” reboot, Sony seems to be on the front lines of this trend. And for the executive, whether its a female spin for ‘Jump Street’ or the super-woke, gritty take on “Charlie’s Angels,” the decision to make these films all comes down to one thing — a strong, central idea.
“With these movies you have to have one big idea for the film,” said Panitch. “In some ways, this big idea is ultimately more important than the brand itself.”