One of the greatest westerns ever made, The Magnificent Seven, will be remade for the big-screen. The western which featured many of the biggest stars of its time, was actually a remake itself of Akira Kurosawa's epic, Seven Samurai. An important point to make before there are cries from film purists claiming it is blasphemy to remake this classic. The project has gone through many hands in the past few years as multiple producers and stars have looked to repackage the film for the current generation. Most recently there was a version to star Tom Cruise, according to ScreenRant, other veteran actors such as Morgan Freeman and Kevin Costner were sought after to make up the posse.
The project is now in the hands another director and actor team, who have found a high level of comfortability and teamwork. Director Antoine Fuqua and Academy Award winning actor Denzel Washington, first forged their partnership on the film Training Day, where Washington won his second Oscar. After their second pairing in this month's upcoming thriller, The Equalizer, they are more energized than ever to keep their professional partnership going. After confirming that the duo are indeed remaking The Magnificent Seven, this is what Fuqua had to say about working with Washington:
“He directed a couple of movies and it takes a couple years to make a movie...I’ve directed a couple of things. Before you know it, the years go by. We kept looking for the right thing. He called about this one, it happened to be the right thing....Denzel’s all about the work,” he said. “He’s all about the acting. He’s an actor. He’ll tell you himself, ‘I’m not a movie star, celebrity, something else, I’m an actor.’ He steps on a set that’s what he is and that’s what he gives you. He gives his heart.”
Fuqua appreciates Washington's professionalism and "aversion to the trappings of stardom." In other words, he isn't a diva and delivers better work than any of his peers. So the eagerness to keep their partnership going is exciting to see.
It will be interesting to see how the remake is handled. With Washington assumably taking over the role previously held by Yul Brenner, it will be fascinating to see how race is handled in the film. It would be hard to not acknowledge how the additional hardship of being black in the wild west America would affect the character(s).
Even of more interest is whom Fuqua and Washington (who seems to be in a producing capacity as well judging by Fuqua's comments) choose as the other six members of the legendary posse. The search for backup is a huge part of the original film and finding six other actors that won't be overshadowed by Washington may not be a simple task. Not to mention Westerns certainly are not the dominant film genre any longer. It will take a quite a dynamic cast to drum up a buzz, since the original came out over fifty years ago. It should be a delight watching this project come together.
We will keep you up to date on the latest information in casting and more for this upcoming project. Does the beginnings of this remake give you confidence? Who would you like to see as the other members of Washington's posse? Let us know on the comment boards!
Source: Point of Geeks, Variety, ScreenRant