It's been nearly 40 years since The Warriors came out to play, but the iconic gang's about to head back into our lives in a big way.
Joe and Anthony Russo are teaming with Paramount TV and Hulu to bring director Walter Hill's 1979 cult classic The Warriors to life, chronicling the titular gang's gritty adventures on the streets of New York City in a new hour-long drama.
The original film followed the Warriors after they were framed for the murder of New York's most powerful gang leader. Trapped in the center of the city, the gang had to dodge both police and rival gangs to make it back to safety on their home turf of Coney Island.
The Russo Brothers are working with writer Frank Baldwin to bring the series to life, which will reportedly have "its own unique brand of grit, pulp, sex and violence." Combining those elements with the memorable characters and thrilling action of the original film should bring the upcoming show big success — especially because now is the perfect time for The Warriors to return as a TV series. Here's how the upcoming series can be TV's next huge hit.
Fill The Crime Gap On TV
Most of TV's buzziest crime shows carry some major true crime influence. Whether it's the ripped-from-the-headlines nature of shows like American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, Law & Order: SVU and American Crime or docuseries hits like The Jinx and Making a Murderer, today's crime shows have a firm link to reality. But The Warriors has a chance to break from the mold and show an action-packed, over the top gangland adventure.
The 1979 movie presented a world where New York City was infested with gangs on every corner. And they weren't normal gangs — these were dudes dressed up as mimes, crazy baseball players and more. The Warriors went for action and entertainment over reality, which has really helped the film stand the test of time. Playing up the story's action while staying true to its crime drama roots could really help The Warriors stand out upon release. We haven't really had a great action-driven crime drama since Sons of Anarchy, meaning there's ample space for The Warriors to carve its own turf in the TV landscape.
Expand The Simple '70s Story
It's unclear whether this version of The Warriors will be set in the '70s or today, but either way the Russos and their team have an opportunity to bring some modern complexity to the cult favorite.
The Warriors are portrayed pretty positively in the film, even though they're a street gang that's undoubtedly committed their fair share of offenses. With the extended story an hour-long drama requires, we need a better look at why the gang was formed in the first place, why individual characters joined and the group's influence on their home turf of Coney Island. And while we're guessing the series will initially follow the film's plot, further seasons could send the Warriors on even more wild adventures as they fight to become the strongest gang in New York City.
Emphasize The Ensemble Cast
Naturally, the upcoming show provides ample opportunities for Hollywood's best young actors. And if the creators are smart, the TV series will emphasize the ensemble cast.
The Warriors would be a standard '70s crime film if it weren't for its memorable characters. It's hard to forget headstrong leader Swan (Michael Beck), wildcard fighter Ajax (James Remar), young graffiti artist Rembrandt (Marcelino Sánchez) and the slew of other brawlers that fill out the Warriors' roster. And that's not even including the other criminals the group faces on their adventure home. As the directors behind Captain America: Civil War, the Russo Brothers proved they could balance a huge ensemble while making each character memorable and unique. We'd love to see a group of talented unknowns cast as the Warriors and watch as they embody the fan-favorite characters with some fresh style.
Adapting The Warriors as a TV series is sure to be a challenge, but now's the perfect time to bring the show to life. The Russos have an opportunity to break the current trend in crime shows with an action-focused series, playing up a memorable ensemble while building new stories built from the foundation of an iconic movie.
Are you excited for The Warriors TV series? Let us know in the comments below.