Mel Gibson is set to direct and co-write a remake of “The Wild Bunch,” the legendary 1969 Western originally directed by Sam Peckinpah. Gibson will handle screenplay duties with Bryan Bagby and also executive produce the film, which is set up at Warner Bros.
“The Wild Bunch” follows a group of outlaws trying to carry out one last big score. The original film had starred an ensemble cast made up of William Holden, Ernest Borgnine, Robert Ryan, Edmond O’Brien, Warren Oates, Jaime Sanchez, and Ben Johnson. According to Deadline, Warner Bros. has been trying to remake Peckinpah’s film for years. Will Smith was once set to star in a remake.
Gibson’s directorial career made a comeback in 2016 with the release of his World War II drama “Hacksaw Ridge.” The movie earned six Oscar nominations, including best picture and best director. Gibson was one of the names Warner Bros. was courting for its “Suicide Squad” sequel and he has history with the studio as the original star of its “Mad Max” franchise.
“The Wild Bunch” was highly controversial upon its original release due to its bloody violence. Gibson’s films are known for their graphic content, including “Hacksaw Ridge,” “Passion of the Christ,” and “Apocalypto.” The director is still planning to put together his World War II film “Destroyer” with Mark Wahlberg but “The Wild Bunch” will become his first directorial effort since “Ridge.”
In addition to directing, Gibson has also made a comeback as an actor in recent years. Gibson appeared apposite Wahlberg in “Daddy’s Home 2” and stars in “Dragged Across Concrete,” which just premiered at the Venice Film Festival this month. Gibson is also planning a sequel to “The Passion of the Christ” entitled “The Resurrection.”