In an exclusive interview with /Film’s Ben Pearson, Ayer, who’s currently promoting his Jason Statham actioner “The Beekeeper,” revealed that a greenlight is contingent on justifying the remake’s existence. As Ayer told Pearson:
“I think we’re still kicking the tires on that and trying to find the right angle. It’s always difficult to take such a beloved and iconic IP and then answer the question of ‘Why now? Why is this worthy of redoing now?’ So it’s always a moving target.”
When Ayer discussed the project four years ago, he talked about turning “The Dirty Dozen” into an ensemble franchise à la “Mission: Impossible” or “The Fast and the Furious.” Ayer explained, “It’s like anything,” he said, “You build an amazing family of characters, and then you watch them bounce off of each other and drive each other crazy.”
He was, however, resistant to the idea of attempting a WWII-era redo. “[I] can do that present day,” he said, “And have that fun and anarchy and wildness, and have modern characters with incredible diversity and real voices.”
No one should have a problem with this in theory. I just hope, if it does eventually go into production, they work up a better screenplay than the aborted remake “Con Air” scripter Scott Rosenberg wrote for Joel Silver in 2006. There might be a .pdf out there in the wilds of the internet, and it’s an inadvertent master class in failing to understand why the original worked in the first place.