The Undisputed movie franchise, as it stands, is officially over according to Scott Adkins in an interview in with The Action Elite contributor Matthew Essary on Monday. The actor had previously expressed the desire for a fifth film even as the franchise, which began in 2002 and continued with Adkins opposite Michael Jai White in 2006, suffered due to rampant piracy.
The subject arose near the end of the interview when Essary asked for updates on the film franchise. “I’ll never say never, but those films, they suffered with piracy,” says the martial arts star. “The reason those films are so good is that we do have enough shooting days to make them good because that company knows how to make good films. They don’t want to do them on the cheap.”
Piracy was especially an issue following the release of Undisputed 3: Redemption. Development on fourth languished and production wouldn’t begin until 2015 with director Todor Chapkanov replacing Isaac Florentine who helmed the second and third film after Walter Hill’s 2002 prison boxing drama, Undisputed.
In June 2017, UN4 Productions Inc. filed lawsuits in as many as eight states over the illegal downloading of the movie less than two months shy of its U.S. release, including Indiana, Colorado, Ohio, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas and Hawaii.
“When people download those movies for free and the movies don’t return a profit, those producers aren’t interested in making another one.” continued Adkins. “That’s just the way it goes. At this point, I think Boyka is done and dusted.”
Essary’s interview occured in the days leading up to events at Cannes where the Undisputed franchise has taken a interesting turn of events. Per Alex Ritman’s exclusive on May 17, new hope now lies in a televised reboot shooting next year from Empire Films and Millenium Films, continuing the saga of self-imbued “most complete fighter in the world”, Uri Boyka, following Adkins’ debut in the franchise thirteen years ago. It is not yet known if Adkins will return to the role or if it will be recast with a new star.
The martial arts star is expected to continue adapting hit comic, Accident Man, with director Jesse V. Johnson as sequel prospects develop and await officiation. Adkins can currently be seen in Johnson’s latest and highly-received critical outing, Avengement, out in select theaters and VOD in North America from Samuel Goldwyn Films.
Read more at The Action Elite.