The road to “The Crow” remake/reboot hasn’t been without its bumps. Things seemed to moving along swimmingly with Relativity pushing the project ahead, with “28 Weeks Later” director Juan Carlos Fresnadillo at the helm and Bradley Cooper set to take the lead role. Things got derailed slightly when The Weinstein Company launched a lawsuit against Relativity regarding the rights to the franchise — the case is now in arbitration — it put the project on hold for a couple of months, enough time for Cooper to start booking his plans for the rest of the year, and even though the legal imbroglio is still being resolved, a new writer, Alex Tse (“Watchmen“) was brought on to rewrite the project. Well, Cooper is booked up for the rest of the year with “The Place Beyond The Pines,” “The Silver Linings Playbook” before heading into “Paradise Lost” and his schedule has forced him to fly the coop, but no worries, as the studio is now beginning to look at potential replacements and the first two choices to rise the top couldn’t be more different.
Mark Wahlberg and Channing Tatum are the first two names to bubble to the surface. The former was actually approached to do the film last year, but turned it down, with the actor revealing in the fall, “We never committed to making the movie. They talked to me about it and there was a director attached who I was a fan of, and he’s no longer doing it. We just thought about it – ‘is there something cool to be done there?’ But we’re not committed to making the movie.” Though the two-time Oscar nominee is no stranger to switching between awards season bait and mainstream fare, will the ingredients (or paycheck) here be enough to lure him back?
As for Tatum, he’s a really well-intentioned, committed to working with brand name directors or in top shelf blockbusters, but in either case nothing has really panned out yet. Of the pair, Tatum would have the most the gain by adding another franchise to his belt, giving him yet one more shot at becoming the breakout star he’s always just on the cusp of missing out on (and yes, we realize he toplines “G.I. Joe” but let’s be honest, no one really cares about that franchise). That said, he’s also probably the worst choice for the role as we can’t see Tatum and his huge body become the lithe, face-painted ghoul that is The Crow without coming across as looking like a Juggalo.
The most curious part of all this is that while THR reports that Relativity “is keen on not wasting time” they couldn’t have picked two busier actors if they tried. Mark Wahlberg heads to “Broken City” with Allen Hughes this fall, while Tatum is just about to gear up to shoot “G.I. Joe 2: Retaliation.” We suppose if they were aiming for a late 2011/early 2012 start, Tatum would work but Wahlberg seems to be a long shot as his window probably won’t be open until the first quarter of the new year at the earliest (though if he decides to do, Relativity will be more than happy to adjust their schedule to suit the actor). All that said, other actors could join the mix as well so who knows how this will play out or which thesp will be resurrected in the franchise do-over. But these two names should at least give you an indication of the very wide swath of talent they’re willing to look at.