Par driving ‘Deathrace’

Anderson speeds to latest pic

Paul W.S. Anderson will write and direct Paramount’s “Deathrace 3000,” a remake of the cult Roger Corman pic “Deathrace 2000.”

Anderson, who last directed “Alien vs. Predator” and “Resident Evil,” will join Corman and C/W partners Tom Cruise and Paula Wagner as producers, as will Anderson’s Impact Pictures partner Jeremy Bolt.

Deal has sparked Viacom into talks for a companion videogame.

The Paul Bartel-directed original is considered a B-movie classic, a campy and polemical black comedy that pitted David Carradine and Sylvester Stallone in a race where drivers accumulated points for running over pedestrians. Anderson’s got a different vision, planning a mix of “Road Warrior” and road kill.

“The original was so much about decimating pedestrians that the actual race was almost irrelevant, and I want to restore that,” Anderson said. “Set in 2020, ours is an ultraviolent, no-holds-barred race with heavily armed Escalades, Ferraris and Aston Martins.”

Anderson returns to the project after a brief flirtation years ago. At the time, he had just directed “Mortal Kombat.”

Since then, Anderson has scored several live-action hits from vidgame properties. He wrote and produced the sequel “Resident Evil: Apocalypse,” and he and Bolt are producing with Constantin an adaptation of the vidgame “Dead or Alive,” which starts production in six weeks. Anderson also is writing a third “Resident Evil” film.

Anderson said he’ll begin writing immediately, and though he’s also developing Sony’s “Man With the Football,” Anderson said he won’t be tinkering under the hood for long on “Deathrace.”

“Films I’ve written to direct have always been very quick transitions to production, and I expect this one to do the same,” he said. ” ‘Deathrace’ will kick ass.”

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