After years of development hell, John Woo is finally set to direct the English-language remake of his 1989 classic The Killer for Peacock. The adaptation of the Hong Kong crime thriller is being made as part of a collaboration with Universal Pictures and will premiere on the streamer sometime in 2023.
The Killer centers around veteran assassin Ah Jong (played by Chow Yun-fat in the original) who accidentally blinds a young nightclub singer named Jennie (Sally Yeh) during what’s supposed to be his final job. After learning Jennie needs an expensive operation to fix her sight, he agrees to perform one last hit against a high-ranking triad boss — just as police are closing in.
An English-language adaptation of The Killer was first announced back in 2007 with Korean-American director John H. Lee helming the film and Woo set to produce. Due to delays, however, Lee left for other projects and Woo took over the remake. In April 2018, it was announced Lupita Nyong’o would star in Woo’s new gender-flipped version, but rewriting the script took so much time that the Oscar winner dropped out of the role.
There’s no word on casting or an official release date for the upcoming Peacock Original; stay tuned for more details.
The Killer remake is part of a three-pronged collaboration between Peacock and Universal that also includes Shooting Stars, Lebron James’ origin story as a high school basketball player that’s currently being filmed in his hometown of Akron, Ohio. The other film is Praise This, a dramedy from Girls Trip producer Will Packer about a community’s church choir that moves in a “hipper musical direction” after a new singer (Chloe Bailey) with ties to “an irreverent hip-hop star” joins the fold.