Sylvester Stallone has inked to star in “Fair Game,” a romantic actioner budgeted around $ 30 million, according to producer Joel Silver. Lensing starts in Miami in September, and Warner Bros. is set to distribute pic next summer.
The deal had been brewing for a few days with the studio, Stallone, Silver Prods. and the thesp’s agent, Ron Meyer from Creative Artists Agency, before being sealed late Thursday afternoon, Silver said. Though Stallone reportedly will pull down a hefty payday, details were not disclosed.
Coupled with TriStar’s “Cliffhanger,” which opened wide on 2,300 screens on Friday, and WB’s upcoming “Demolition Man,” this plants the 46-year-old actor firmly in the rock ’em, sock ’em arena that made him a star.
And though Stallone tried to pepper his resume with light comedy fare like “Oscar” and “Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot,” he knows what works for his audience.
“I got a real heavy dose of reality back in the late ’80s and early ’90s,” Stallone said. “I kind of made peace with myself and (realized) that I should stop trying to reach out for something that perhaps is not what my real essence is.
“There’s no disgrace in doing adventure films. But at one time I thought you became the lowest in the artistic food chain. Now, (Warners) saw what I was doing with ‘Demolition,’ and they said OK to this new picture.”
Silver feels “Fair Game” will elaborate on the tough-skinned romantic chemistry between Mel Gibson and Rene Russo in WB’s “Lethal Weapon 3.”
“In this story, Sly is a Miami cop who teams up with a female management consultant,” Silver said. “And they really don’t like each other in the beginning, but then they solve the crime and really like each other by the end. It’s the kind of male/female buddy picture I haven’t made yet. It will have that ‘Tango & Cash’ energy.” The femme lead hasn’t been cast yet.
Charlie Fletcher is writing the screenplay for “Fair Game” from the book by Paula Gosling, which WB has owned for years. The title may change. Silver hasn’t set a helmer.
A future action project for Stallone is “Judge Dredd,” an Andy Vajna project at Cinergi that is still “in the early stages of development,” per Cinergi sources. The pic is based on a popular 1980’s sci-fi comic book series about gun-toting judges who also act as instant executioners.
“It’s a satire,” said Stallone, who agrees the film’s tone is like “Blade Runner” meeting Judge Wapner. “It’s set 300 years in the future, where 98% of the people are unemployed. The policemen are judges, and you’re judged on the spot.” BV is set to distribute the pic.