If you’re a former action star of a certain age, there’s a certain undeniable appeal to going meta. As exemplified by Jean-Claude Van Damme—who’s done it at least twice now, with the semi-serious JCVD, and his much goofier Amazon series Jean-Claude Van Johnson—nothing says “I am aware that I, and my career, are inherently ridiculous” like painting yourself on-screen as some sort of self-destructive prima donna, gleefully taking swipes at your own persona. Done wrong, and it comes off as little more than insincere public self-flagellation, but if you can pull it off, the meta route can feel like a refreshing dose of honesty, inviting the audience behind a manufactured “badass” mask.
Few ’80s stars were as defined by that kind of public disguise as Australian comic Paul Hogan, who ended up playing vested knife identifier Michael “Crocodile” Dundee in three films across his career (the latest coming as recently as 2001). Now Hogan—who briefly revisited the role for a hoax-y Australian tourism campaign starring Danny McBride as “Crocodile Dundee Jr.” earlier this year—is preparing to play perhaps his greatest role of all: Himself. (Although honestly, we might have to take that back, because we do enjoy Crocodile Dundee quite a bit.)
Per Variety, Hogan is set to star in a new fiction film, The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee, which is about him trying to receive a knighthood for his service to acting, and instead managing to destroy his life and reputation in the process. The film is being directed by Dean Murphy, who’s apparently taken Hogan on as his aging Aussie muse, directing his last three sporadically produced films: 2004's “straight guys pretend to be gay for tax purposes” comedy Strange Bedfellows, father-son fishing trip Charlie & Boots, and the joke-focused ensemble comedy That’s Not My Dog, which came out earlier this year.