“Cannonball Run” — the 1981 cross-country car chase ensemble comedy that starred, as improbable as it sounds, Burt Reynolds, Roger Moore, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., Farrah Fawcett, Terry Bradshaw and Jackie Chan — may be getting a remake. And that remake may be financially backed in part by auto maker General Motors.
Vulture reports that the deal to make the movie is still being worked out, but that GM — a company that came out of bankruptcy in 2009 thanks to substantial financial assistance from the U.S. and Canadian governments — is poised to take “an actual hard-dollar, equity stake” in the film, which would, in turn, feature a bevy of vehicles from its 2014 line.
Because the U.S. and Canada still own stakes in the company (27 and 12 percent, respectively), one could argue that, in a way, we’re all investing in the “Cannonball Run” remake. Hence, it’s important for you to know that Guy Ritchie is the current front-runner to direct (Shawn Levy of “Night at the Museum” and “Real Steel” is also interested), and, according to Vulture, Ritchie wants Brad Pitt — who mumbled pseudo-Irishly throughout’s Ritchie’s 2000 crime flick “Snatch” — to star.
Ritchie also is interested in shooting some of the movie in Europe, even though the original focused on a U.S.-based cross-country race. No word on whether the Middle Eastern oil sheikh character, played circa 1981 by Jamie Farr, will make a reappearance in the 2011 version. (Fingers crossed!)
The ’81 “Cannonball Run” spawned a sequel, 1984’s “Cannonball Run II.” So if this all works out, GM could land a couple of two-hour product placements and audiences could again be treated to a double-helping of the randy, lowbrow comedy that a good, old-fashioned ensemble racing movie provides.
Would anyone be interested in seeing a “Run” retry? Would you be less inclined to buy a ticket knowing that GM played a key role in making the movie happen? Weigh in by posting a comment. But first, watch the trailer for the original below.