Variety is reporting that Paramount’s upcoming reboot of the 1997 Val Kilmer (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang)-starring action thriller The Saint has entered talks with Star Trek reboot series and Wonder Woman 1984 star Chris Pine to star in the titular role. I mentioned the news in the most recent episode of the Movie Lovers Unite’s Podcast that I just don’t see Chris Pine the box office draw that this reboot needs to be successful. But I’m hoping that I’m wrong, because I want this reboot to be successful and I’m a huge fan of the original film.
The new adaptation is being penned by Seth Grahame-Smith (The Lego Batman Movie) and directed by Dexter Fletcher (Rocketman), with Lorenzo Di Bonaventura (Transformers) set to produce alongside Brad Krevoy and Robert Evans, who contributed to the original film and the upcoming project before his death last year.
Paramount Pictures and Pine have worked together for over a decade now, with the studio helping launch the 39-year-old actor’s career as a leading man with his role in J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek reboot franchise and its sequels, as well as the indie post-apocalyptic thriller Carriers, the DreamWorks animated fantasy adventure Rise of the Guardians and the 2014 attempt to reboot the Tom Clancy based franchise, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. As Noah Hawley (Legion) is currently at work developing a fourth installment in the Trek franchise, Paramount reportedly saw The Saint as the perfect role for its new Capt. Kirk until that script is finished.
The movie follows Simon Templar (a.k.a. The Saint), a Robin Hood-esque criminal and thief for hire. The Simon Templar character made his debut in Leslie Charteris’ 1928 novel Meet the Tiger. It was followed by Enter the Saint, which Charteris is said to have considered the official start of the long-running book series. That series would continue for more than half a century and inspire quite a few adaptations across a wide variety of mediums, including a popular television series that ran from 1962 to 1969 and introduced the world to future James Bond Roger Moore. Before that, though, a The Saint movie franchise was produced at RKO Pictures between 1938 and 1943. Of course, modern audiences are more likely to remember the 1997 The Saint movie, directed by Phillip Noyce and starring Val Kilmer in the title role.
Though the Kilmer-led film adaptation was not very well-received by critics, it was a modest success with audiences and was a hit at the box office, grossing over $61 million at the domestic box office and over $118 million at the global box office on a $68 million budget.