When word came not long ago that a second reboot of “Shaft” was in the works at New Line, fans of the character bristled when it was suggested the tone of the new film would be more comedic in nature – conjuring up images of a straight out blaxploitation satire along “Black Dynamite” or “Undercover Brother” lines.
Not helping was the hiring of sitcom writers Kenya Barris (“Black-ish”) and Alex Barnow (“The Goldbergs”) to pen the script about the black private detective. Producer John Davis, who is behind the new Wesley Snipes-led NBC series “The Player” along with the new “Shaft” reboot, spoke with Collider at the Television Critics Association and says the film will very much be dramatic in nature albeit with some scattered lighter moments:
“[He’s] just a great character. He’s just the greatest badass. You start with an amazing character – a great badass with charisma. He’s a lot like Phillip in [The Player], guys with a kind of violent past who are willing to stand up to stuff, who will go to unconventional means to do what’s right.
It’s a reinvention of the story so that it’s both fresh and harkens back to what we love about that character. It’s drama, but it’s going to be drama with a lot of fun moments. A lot of lighter moments.”
Asked about what age this new John Shaft would be, all Davis would say is that the new film could be a “generational story”.