While the idea for a remake of 2011 French comedy drama The Intouchables has been floating around for a while, it took a step closer to reality when it was revealed in March that Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) and Kevin Hart (Ride Along) were in talks to star. With their deals now closed, news arrives via Deadline that Neil Burger (The Illusionist) has come aboard to direct.
Intouchables, as it was known in France, sees Francois Cluzet as Phillippe, a wealthy aristocrat who becomes a quadriplegic after a paragliding accident. When he needs to hire a caretaker and companion, he rejects the seemingly perfect candidates for a charismatic, but troubled young man from the projects (Omar Sy). It has been through the development ringer on the US side, with the likes of Paul Feig (Bridesmaids) considering the project, but The Weinstein Company has turned to Burger to call the shots.
The debate remains whether this one needs remaking, but the combination of Hart and Cranston is certainly interesting, at least in a hypothetical sense, and all involved are apparently happy with writer Jon Hartmere's (The Electric Company) fresh take on the story. The Weinstein Company have pencilled in a January start date for shooting and is hoping to film in New York.
As for Burger, he went on to make Limitless (2011) and the first Divergent (2014) film, and is currently writing a Bride Of Frankenstein movie for Universal Pictures' connected monster universe.