Saturday, May 18, 2024

Idris Elba? Denzel Washington? Is it Time for a Black Dr. Richard Kimble? Albert Hughes to Direct Updated “The Fugitive”


Stop the presses. Albert Hughes has been tapped to direct a new iteration of “The Fugitive,”  based on the original TV show starring David Janssen and the 1983 movie starring Harrison Ford.

Warner Bros. made the deal, and having Hughes sends a signal that Dr. Richard Kimble could be an African American this time around. Why not? The possibilities are tantalizing. Idris Elba? Denzel Washington? Will Smith?

The other big casting part is for Detecive. Gerard, who doggedly went after Kimble to catch him on the run. Gerard became a US Marshall in the Andrew Davis movie. He was played by Tommy Lee Jones, who won an Oscar. Would he also be African American? Andre Braugher ring a bell? Or Denzel chasing Idris? And don’t forget the one-armed man. There are also great female roles for whoever plays Kimble’s dead wife and his girlfriend who helps him on the run. Halle Berry?

What a great new take this could be for “The Fugitive,” which was based on a real story. Dr. Sam Sheppard was an American neurosurgeon who was exonerated in 1966, having been convicted of the 1954 murder of his wife, Marilyn Reese Sheppard.

BTW David Janssen’s widow, the great Dani Janssen, is still alive and if I remember correctly, she has a say in all this. Dani, of course, for twenty years or more was known for giving Hollywood’s most exclusive Oscar party. She’s retired now, but her legacy lives on.

PS My first TV crush was on Diane Baker, who played Richard Kimble’s girlfriend in the sensational finale of the TV show.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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