Entertainment mogul Sean Combs and the Oscar-winning director-producer Brian Grazer are joining forces to remake the gangster cult classic film, King of New York.”
Combs who recently launched his own music television network, is allegedly going to try his hand at producing movies. According to some media buzz, Combs will also appear in the film perhaps as the lead.
Brian Grazer is not a stranger to the gangster film genre as his film American Gangster was well received. Grazer is also known for working with Ron Howard forming a production company of their own called Imagine Entertainment. Some of Grazer’s films include; Splash, Nigh Shift, Parenthood, Backdraft, A Beautiful Mind, Apollo 13, 8 Mile, Frost/Nixon, Inside Man, Boomerang, The Nutty Professor, Intolerable Cruelty, The Da Vinci Code, Tower Heist as well as television programs. Grazer’s productions over the years have been nominated for 43 Academy Awards and 131 Emmy Awards.
The original 1990 film King of New York became a huge hit among the gangster film genre fan base. The film directed by Abel Ferrara starred Christopher Walken who portrayed drug lord Frank White. The screenplay written by Nicolas St. John featured Laurence Fishburne as Jimmy Jump, David Caruso as Dennis Gilley, Wesley Snipes as Thomas Flanigan, Victor Argo as Roy Bishop, Giancarlo Esposito as Lance, Frank Adonis as Paul Calgari, and Steve Buscemi as Test Tube.
The dark film tells the story of drug lord Frank White who is released after a lengthy stint in prison. After his prison release and back in society, White decides to do something good and tries to build a multi-million dollar hospital in a neighborhood in Brooklyn. White finds himself facing opposition from his vast criminal colleagues and foes and a violent mob war ensues. New York City is the backdrop for the violent film and focuses on Little Italy, Chinatown and Brooklyn.
Only time will tell if the Combs remake will do the original justice. It will probably feature a modern update with more violence and a great soundtrack but usually it seems best to leave a cult classic film alone.
Below is some interesting trivia about the cult classic film King of New York.
New York rapper ‘The Notorious B.I.G’ used the moniker “Frank White” in many of his songs.
Real-life friends David Caruso and Wesley Snipes later went on to get cast in NYPD Blue (1993) and New Jack City (1991) each of which launched both actors into the mainstream.
The film’s opening sequence, featuring Frank White emerging from jail was shot at Sing Sing prison, the first time the infamous prison had ever been used as a filming location.
The shootout between the Chinatown gang and Frank White’s crew was filmed in the same alley featured in the Abel Ferrara film China Girl. (1987)
Director Abel Ferrara wrote a famous line in the film which was said by Walken’s character Frank White “A nickel bag gets sold in the Park: I want IN.”