Speculation About a Possible "Point Break" Remake

Photo Credit: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
January 26th, 2014

In 2011, Alcon Entertainment and Warner Brothers announced intentions to remake the 1991 surf movie "Point Break." The original film was a huge success for director Kathryn Bigelow and quickly became a cult classic. It featured an all-star cast, a bevy of killer lines, and some of the cheesiest action sequences ever filmed. Still, fans of the original were skeptical of the 2011 announcement. Recent news for the "Point Break" remake has many fans scratching their heads while others wait to see how the remaining decisions fall out.

Perhaps the biggest news for the "Point Break" remake as of January 2014 is that Gerard Butler is likely to play Bodhi. In the original movie, Bodhi is both a legendary surfer and a bank robber. Played by Patrick Swayze, Bodhi is the likable villain of the story. When news hit the Internet that Butler was in talks for the role, some fans cried out in protest. On Twitter, one fan suggested that Matthew McConaughey would be a better selection. Others pointed to Butler's role in the failed surfing film, "Chasing Mavericks," as a reason he wouldn't be a good choice for the character.

The fan backlash isn't surprising, considering the cult classic status of the original movie. If recent casting decisions across Hollywood are any indication, studios are going to incite fans with almost any decision, and Butler has certainly proven himself in almost every type of role. Some movie reviewers aren't worried about a Butler casting, but do wonder who could be slotted into the role of Johnny Utah. Part of the success of the original "Point Break" was due to the chemistry between Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze, so the casting decision is important.

There are plenty of questions about the cast for the new "Point Break," but Keanu Reeves himself answered one during an appearance for "47 Ronin." It's common for original actors from popular movies to make cameo or other appearances in remakes. Harrison Ford is doing so in the new Jack Ryan reboot, which stars Channing Tatum as the popular character. According to Reeves, however, there's no chance he'll be appearing in a "Point Break" remake. In an interview with the BBC, Reeves wished the filmmakers well but pointed out that it would be challenging to make the story work in a new movie. The filmmakers may agree with Reeves, as there is information circulating indicating that the remake won't center so heavily on surfing. Instead, it will be set against a background of extreme sports in general.

Casting is up in the air, but the film does have a director and a writer. Ericson Core is directing the film. Relatively speaking, he's a new director. Core's past direction credits include three episodes of television's "Family Law," a 2008 television movie, and 2006's "Invincible." Core isn't a complete newbie when it comes to action flicks, though. He was director of photography for "The Fast and the Furious" and "Daredevil."

Writing is also important for the "Point Break" remake. From cheesy to profound, the original movie is full of quotable lines. Veteran writer Kurt Wimmer will be at the helm of the remake script. Past writing credits for Wimmer include the adaptation of Michael Crichton's "Sphere," the screenplay for "The Thomas Crown Affair," and "Law Abiding Citizen." Wimmer has written a variety of stories, including both action and dialogue-centric movies. There's no reason to believe he won't be able to create a viable story with memorable characters for "Point Break," which is in keeping with the original film. Wimmer is also the type of writer that can make the romantic elements of "Point Break" work within the overall arc of the cops-and-robbers storyline.

According to reports, filming is scheduled to begin on the new "Point Break" during the summer of 2014. Detailed release dates aren't yet known, though the movie is likely to hit both domestic and international theaters in 2015. In the meantime, die-hard fans are unlikely to warm up to any casting choice. Not-so-die-hard fans, on the other hand, wait eagerly for news about who will play Johnny Utah, a character who was immortalized by VHS, then DVD. What current actor can match Keanu Reeves for sheer gnarly presence? What will happen if the filmmakers go a completely different route?

Though casting for Johnny Utah is the most important question for most fans, other questions exist. Who will be cast as Pappas, originally played by Gary Busey? What young actress will play Tyler, the film's love interest? With so many casting decisions to make, news about the "Point Break" remake is going to make entertainment headlines several times before summer filming starts.