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Par hot on the trail of an old ‘Thief’

Redo to keep Hitchcock's basic storyline intact

Paramount has caught up with Alfred Hitchcock’s “To Catch a Thief,” setting up a modern-day remake of the romantic thriller with Original Film partner Neal Moritz producing and Todd Komarnicki writing.

Miami-set redo will leave the basic storyline from Hitchcock’s film intact: A reformed jewel thief scrambles to clear his reputation while being framed for a series of elaborate robberies from the super-rich.

The 1955 release starred Cary Grant as an American expat on the French Riviera who falls for a wealthy American, played by Grace Kelly, as a rash of jewel thefts breaks out.

Hitchcock directed a script by John Michael Hayes, and Robert Burks won an Oscar for color cinematography. Moritz produced “2 Fast 2 Furious,” “S.W.A.T.” and “Out of Time” last year through Sony-based Original. He’s developing a third installment of “The Fast and the Furious” with Vin Diesel expected to return and “Spy Hunter,” both for Universal.

Komarnicki and partner Jon Berg, who operate Guy Walks Into a Bar, signed a first-look production deal with Paramount last year (Daily Variety, Dec. 18) after releasing “Elf” as their maiden project. Komarnicki’s also writing “Vikings” for Fox (Luc Besson’s Europa is producing with Guy Walks Into a Bar) and rewriting “Perfect Strangers” for Revolution.

Paramount has recently shown a propensity for remakes, with “The Italian Job” as its top grosser last year and “The Stepford Wives,” “The Manchurian Candidate” and “What’s It All About, Alfie?” on its release schedule this year. “The Longest Yard” is set as a major 2005 release, and the studio has remakes of “The War of the Worlds,” “Pet Sematary,” “The Warriors,” “Seconds” and “The Reincarnation of Peter Proud” in development.

Par co-prexy Tom Jacobson is overseeing “To Catch a Thief” with VP Marc Evans. Original Films exec VP Tania Landau is exec producing.

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