Actor Bradley Cooper and director Stephen Spielberg are officially teaming up to revisit Bullitt, according to the trades on Thursday. While not a remake, it is reported to be a new idea centered on the character from the 1968 original film.
As Justin Kroll’s Deadline exclusive notes, Cooper and Spielberg had been working on partnering together on something for years whether it was Cooper’s American Sniper which eventually went to Clint Eastwood to direct, or the actor’s latest own acting/directing endeavor, Maestro – about the life and times of Leonard Bernstein which bows on Netflix in 2023 – which Spielberg offered to Cooper after impressing him with his work on A Star Is Born (2018).
Based on author Robert L. Fish’s 1962 paperback, “Mute Witness”, Bullitt featured Steve McQueen as no-nonsense cop Frank Bullitt, forced to go to town on the criminals who murdered his informant. I managed to finally stream it this year and so did our own Vance P. Ang who took a gander at the crime procedural classic with a retro review back in March with the following:
At its core, the movie is a by-the-numbers cop thriller but is filled with a taut narrative, that immediately draws in the viewer. There are themes of corruption and cronyism which are by no means rare or unique story elements in similar films; however there seems to be an almost laconic cynicism peppered into the story which is serviceably told by Director Peter Yates. And yet the overwhelming success of the film, is ofcourse in no small part due to the legendary Steve McQueen in what might be his best performance. One can easily look to films like ‘THE MAGNIFICENT SEVEN’ (1960), ‘THE GREAT ESCAPE’ (1963), ‘THE THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR’ (1968) and ‘THE GETAWAY’ (1972’) and whilst McQueen was brilliant in those movies, there is ample reason as to why ‘BULLITT’ is so highly regarded above those films.
The film is still in development stages but if you’ve seen the original and enjoy the works of the aforementioned, I reckon this newest incarnation will be a smart and spiffy one.
Cooper and Spielberg are set to produce the new film, working alongside the late McQueen’s respective son and granddaughter, Chad and Molly McQueen who will serve as exec producers from a script by Josh Singer.
Read more at Deadline.
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Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.