Surf's up for action star Gerard Butler, who is poised to star in a remake of the 1991 thriller "Point Break," which memorably featured Keanu Reeves as an FBI agent infiltrating a gang of bank-robbing surfer dudes led by Patrick Swayze's laid-back Bodhi.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Butler is in final negotiations to play the nirvana-seeking criminal Swayze made popular in a new remake from Alcon Entertainment and Warner Bros. The movie will feature some surfing but will also be set in the broader world of international extreme sports. Reeves' character, Johnny Utah, has yet to be cast.
Over the years the original film, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, has become something of a classic of junk cinema with its totally-'90s surf slang, over-the-top stunts, gunplay and bromantic overtones. It has also been kept alive in the public consciousness via "Point Break Live," an absurdist interactive stage adaptation that started in Seattle in 2003 and has played in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Francisco and New York.
The prospect of a new "Point Break" film raises the question of whether it's sacrilegious to remake such cult favorites, or if their inherent ridiculousness makes them fair game. Either way, Butler's first outing in a surf film won't inspire much confidence: His "Chasing Mavericks" bombed in 2012 and earned dismal reviews.
Ericson Core, who will direct the new "Point Break," has some action movie bona fides, but as a cinematographer, for films such as "The Fast & the Furious" and "Daredevil;" as a director his biggest credit is the underdog football movie "Invincible."
Working on "Chasing Mavericks," Butler nearly drowned when he wiped out in the face of a massive wave. Let's hope he and his movie fare better this time around.
Incidentally, fans of the original "Point Break" were hardly optimistic. Reaction to the news was swift and merciless on Twitter, with many devotees of the original voicing displeasure at the idea of Butler taking up the Bodhi mantle.