Bousman to direct horror remake

Dimension Films has closed a deal to remake David Cronenberg’s 1981 horror pic “Scanners.”

Redo will be directed by Darren Lynn Bousman, who helmed “Saw II” and “Saw III” and is prepping the fourth installment. David Goyer will pen the script.

Story revolves around a scientist who infiltrates an underground movement of “scanners,” whose telepathic abilities make them lethal weapons. The original was best remembered for an exploding head finale.

Dimension co-chairman Bob Weinstein has earmarked an early 2008 production start; aim is to release the film later that year.

Production prexy Richard Saperstein was a catalyst for the remake. He optioned the rights when heading production for Artisan Pictures in 2002, and when those rights lapsed recently, he and Weinstein pounced.

Saperstein said Cronenberg’s original had a memorable paranoia theme. Advances in areas like gene manipulation and stem cell research make the concept more plausible.

Producing the film will be Rene Malo, Pierre David, Clark Peterson, Jessika Borsiczky Goyer, Mark Burg and Oren Koules. The latter two produce and finance the “Saw” series through their Twisted Pictures banner.

Dimension made a two-picture directing deal with Bousman right after Lionsgate released “Saw II,” and “Scanners” will be his first project for Dimension. Bousman starts production on “Saw IV” on April 15 and then will move directly into the rock opera “Repo” for Twisted Pictures and Lionsgate. Goyer will have the “Scanners” script ready when he finishes.

Dimension has kicked its genre business into high gear. Studio releases “Grindhouse” on April 6; the John Cusack-Samuel L. Jackson thriller “1408” just wrapped; Rob Zombie is about to begin production on “Halloween”; and Dimension just hired Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski to adapt Stephen King novel “The Cell” for “Hostel” director Eli Roth.

Goyer penned the “Blade” series and co-wrote “Batman Begins.”

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