New Line began developing a new “Shaft” earlier this year by acquiring the remake rights and setting up the latest version with producer John Davis.
MGM’s 1971 blaxploitation film was based on Ernest Tidyman’s novel and directed by Gordon Parks. John Shaft was portrayed by Richard Roundtree, who navigates mob neighborhoods in New York City to find the missing daughter of a mobster.
The film was a major success at the box office, pulling in $13 million on a budget of $500,000. Isaac Hayes’ “Theme from Shaft” won the Academy Award for original song. Parks and Roundtree also teamed on “Shaft’s Big Score” in 1972 and “Shaft in Africa” in 1973. “Shaft” was selected for preservation in the U.S. National Film Registry by the Library of Congress in 2000.
John Singleton directed Paramount’s 2000 reboot, starring Samuel L. Jackson as the nephew of John Shaft. That version was also successful, with $108 million in worldwide grosses.
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Davis is a producer on Warner Bros.’ upcoming “The Man From U.N.C.L.E.,” starring Henry Cavill and Armie Hammer, and Sony’s “Joy,” starring Jennifer Lawrence.
Richard Brener and Samuel J. Brown are overseeing “Shaft” for New Line.
Barris and Barnow are developing a New Line comedy about a man who hears the voice of Ice Cube in his head.
“Black-ish” premiered in September on ABC and has been picked up for a second season. Barris also worked on “Barbershop 3.” Barnow co-created the Matthew Perry sitcom “Mr. Sunshine.”
Barris is repped by CAA, Principato-Young Entertainment and Morris Yorn. Barnow is repped by UTA and Hansen Jacobson.
The news was first reported by the Hollywood Reporter.