Back in February it was reported that Rocketman director Dexter Fletcher was teaming up with Paramount once again, this time for a reboot of The Saint.
Based on a series of 1920s books by Leslie Charteris, they revolved around Simon Templar, aka The Saint, a Robin Hood-esque criminal and thief for hire. Those books were turned into the British TV series, which itself was turned into a 1997 movie starring Val Kilmer.
Fletcher has now found his post-Kilmer star. Chris Pine has signed on to star in the film. He has a good relationship with the studio, already starring in the Star Trek franchise and leading the rebooted Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, which never took off. Still, the studio clearly likes him, and they reportedly see The Saint as – you’ll never guess – the start of a franchise.
To be fair, they probably thought the same of the ’97 Kilmer film. Just like back in the 90s, studios seem to think The Saint holds far more cultural cache than it actually does. If you asked 100 people of varying ages on the street if they knew what The Saint was, how many would answer in the affirmative? And would those who did know even be interested in a new Saint film?
We’ll wait and see what happens. It’s possible this isn’t even Fletcher’s next movie, as he’s attached to multiple projects, including Sherlock Holmes 3 and the Universal monster movie Renfield. If there ever is a post-COVID-19 world, scheduling will likely be a problem as everyone tries to figure out what project is worth taking on next.
So The Saint could be in production next month, or it could be put on the backburner for a few more years. This is a movie that had Chris Pratt circling the lead role for what felt like years, so it’s possible we could be in for a few more years of Paramount twiddling their thumbs and hoping that time will make a Saint movie a better idea.