Sunday, June 17, 2018
  • Stuck in the '80s
  • Steve Spears

Who’s ready for another Cannonball Run?

Let's face it: Some movies really are products of their time and place. Take a bunch of A-list comedic actors, put them in sports cars and let them race across the country with a total disrespect for the law and you have 1981's Cannonball Run.

That movie's cast reads like a who's-who of that era: Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Farrah Fawcett, Dom DeLuise, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Adrienne Barbeau, Terry Bradshaw, Jackie Chan, Jamie Farr, Peter Fonda … the list goes on and on. And yes, they made a Cannonball II and it's so bad, I'm not going to say anything more about it.

So what are we to make of news that a Cannonball Run reboot is on its way?

The Hollywood Reporter says Doug Liman (Edge of Tomorrow, Mrs. and Mrs. Smith) is in talks to redirect such a project, which would include a modernized all-star cast. (A script is already written, but in true Cannonball fashion, I'm sure it's something that will have to rewritten on the run – if you'll forgive the pun.)

Yeah, this is just the sort of lazy project we expect these days from Hollywood – though at least the premise isn't bad. I mean, it's been almost 40 years. But what A-list star would really want to attach themselves to this? Do you see Brad Pitt and George Clooney signing on? (No, they already had their own "Cannonball" with the Ocean movies.)

The original Cannonball Run was a box-office powerhouse, finishing sixth in 1981 behind classics such as Raiders of the Lost Ark, On Golden Pond, Superman II, Arthur and Stripes. Still critics pretty much despised it, giving it a 29 percent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. (Let's face it: that movie's brand of comedy would be far too unacceptable at the theaters these days.)

So start your cars if you want to, Hollywood. This is a project that I think most people would rather see left in the garage.

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