Film to be remade with African-American cast

Screen Gems will remake Lawrence Kasdan’s 1983 pic “The Big Chill.”

The movie will likely be retitled, but the original script by Kasdan and Barbara Benedek will be used as a template; the storyline will be contemporized and the cast will be African American.

Screen Gems owns the rights and will hire a screenwriter to do a polish on the original script. Kasdan is not involved.

Regina King will be part of the ensemble, and she will produce with her sister, Reina King, and Will Packer (“Stomp the Yard”).

Screen Gems president Clint Culpepper is out to directors and intends to get the picture in production by year’s end.

The remake will stick closely to the original storyline, in which seven college friends reunite over a weekend at a South Carolina house for the funeral of a pal. As they get reacquainted, they become introspective about how their lives turned out.

The cast of the new film will be in their 30s, which means the characters will have matriculated together in the 1990s instead of the ’60s. Music will be a big part of the film, though the redo may stick with the original’s fixation on Motown classics.

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