In the clearest sign that the ’90s’ nostalgia for the ’70s has returned since that Brady Bunch-themed Super Bowl commercial, The Wrap reports that New Line is preparing to reboot the black private dick who’s a sex machine to all the chicks, Shaft. This will be the second time the blaxploitation hero has been revived for a new generation; Samuel L. Jackson donned the leather duster as John Shaft’s nephew John Shaft Jr. in 2000.
The reboot is being produced by John Davis, a Hollywood veteran whose credits include the original Predator, Predator 2, AVP: Alien Vs. Predator, Aliens Vs. Predator: Reqiuem, 2010’s Predators, and the upcoming don’t-call-it-a-reboot Predator, as well as a bunch of other, non-Predator stuff. So Davis has experience with reboots, and reboots that don’t want to call themselves reboots, meaning that this Shaft will probably have a slick-looking trailer that will briefly raise hopes/inspire fear, then debut to middling box office and be forgotten.
But the real question here is, who will play the Web 3.0 version of the cat who won’t cop out when there’s danger all about? Michael Jai White essentially produced a feature-length audition for the part in Black Dynamite, and Jamie Foxx already starred in a blaxploitation movie called Django Unchained. Then there’s MCU veteran Anthony Mackie, and Michael Kenneth Williams has a proven ability to look cool walking around with a long coat and a shotgun. Whoever it is, let’s hope he treats his duty to please that booty as the sacred trust that it is.