RLJ Entertainment has acquired all U.S. rights to Jean-Claude Van Damme’s “Kickboxer: Vengeance” and will release the sequel in theaters and on demand later this year.
John Stockwell directed from a script by Dimitri Logothetis and Jim McGrath. The cast includes pro athletes Alain Moussi (“X-Men: Days of Future Past”), Dave Bautista (“Guardians of the Galaxy”), Gina Carano, former UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre (“Captain America”) and Cain Velasquez.
The film was produced by Logothetis along with Nicholas Celozzi, Ted Field, Allen Knudson, Samuel Cory Timpson and Rob Hickman, who also orchestrated the majority of the financing.
“Kickboxer: Vengeance” is an update to the 1989 original with Moussi playing a martial artist, Kurt Sloane, who travels to Thailand to avenge his brother’s death at the hands of Bautista’s Tong Po character. Van Damme played the Sloane character in the original 1989 “Kickboxer,” which grossed $14 million on a $1.5 million budget.
About 180 union crew members had to wait two months to receive their pay on the film last year. Producers, who blamed a bridge lender who pulled out of the project, made over $500,000 in late payments.
Recent RLJ releases include “The Rewrite,” with Hugh Grant and Marisa Tomei; “The Cobbler” with Adam Sandler, written and directed by Tom McCarthy; “Blackbird,” starring Mo’Nique, Isaiah Washington and Julian Walker; and “Bone Tomahawk,” starring Kurt Russell.
Jess De Leo and Mark Ward negotiated the deal for RLJ with Logothetis, Field, Brian O’Shea and Mike Weber on behalf of the film.