So Sylvester Stallone will reunite with his Copland colleague Robert De Niro to star in Grudge Match, about two 60-something boxers coaxed out of retirement by a wily promoter — to fight each other.
Details about the project first arrived in June when it was also announced that Get Smart and Anger Management director Peter Segal had signed on to helm, and now Deadline has gotten news that not only is the film a go, but that it has added a new name to the cast. Kevin Hart, who has had a big year in 2012 so far with roles in movies like The Five-Year Engagement and Think Like A Man, has signed on to play “the fight promoter who gets two retired brawlers back in the ring.” Entourage creator Doug Ellin is currently working on the most recent draft of the script. At this time we don’t know much about the script other than the fact that both De Niro and Stallone will be playing retired fighters who decide to have one final bought.
As Deadline points out, it will be interesting to see how this plays out on the physical side, as Stallone has kept up with action hero exercise regimen through the years, while De Niro has been showing more of his age in recent years. Then again, De Niro did famously gain 70 pounds when he was doing scenes for the end of Raging Bull, so many he still has it in him to do the reverse and get in scary shape for Grudge Match.
The original screenplay was written by Tim Kelleher, who once upon a time was the New Media editor for FIRST THINGS. As these things go in Hollywood, his baby is going through a series of “drafts.”
This thing is either going to be a helluva lotta fun or an unforgivable mess. I don’t see much in between.