“Maniac Cop,” a modern adaptation of William Lustig’s 1988 cult classic that Nicolas Winding Refn and his partner Lene Børglum are producing, is set to shoot this summer in Los Angeles, with Wild Bunch on board to handle world sales.
Paul Brett at London-based Prescience MA’s Merlin Funds has come on board to finance the pic, which is being produced by Refn and Børglum’s Copenhagen-set banner Space Rocket Nation, along with Bold Films.
“Maniac Cop” was penned by Ed Brubaker (“Captain America: The Winter Soldier,” “Angel of Death”) in collaboration with Refn, and will be helmed by John Hyams (“Universal Soldier: Day of Reckoning”).
Set in the present, “Maniac Cop” follows a determined L.A. police officer who sets out to reveal the truth about the brutal murders of innocent people by one of her fellow cops. Casting for the film is underway.
Lustig and Refn, who have known each others for many years, are serving as creative producers on “Maniac Cop.”
Børglum told Variety that “Maniac Cop” will not be a pure horror film but rather a contemporary and realistic action thriller. Børglum said that the long-gestating project took several years to get off the ground because it took some time to secure the film rights, find the right director and partners, and get the financing in place. Christopher Woodrow’s Vendian Entertainment was previously involved in the film.
Although Refn will be creatively involved in the film, “Maniac Cop” will showcase Hyams’ directing style. “The reason why we wanted to work with John Hyams is because we love his visual style and his ability to work extremely well on a limited budget,” Børglum said.
“Maniac Cop” will mark the third collaboration between Refn and Wild Bunch, which handled international sales on “Only God Forgives” and “The Neon Demon,” both of which competed at the Cannes Film Festival.
Refn is represented by WME and Independent Talent Group.