Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

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Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Thu Dec 27, 2007 10:18 am

I think Will Smith should be the driver in the Larson movie. I thought he looked pretty damn cool driving the shelby mustang in I am Legend. :) no I'm not kidding. I want to see what others think though. :)

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Victor Kros » Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:15 pm

There are so many things wrong with that statement, I don't even know how to reply to this one.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Michael Pajaro » Thu Dec 27, 2007 1:45 pm

Allow me to take this one, Victor.

Will Smith is a good actor. He's made some good movies. But he's kind of become "too big for his britches". You rarely see him as the character he's portraying; he's always "Will Smith." He's almost a caricature of himself.

With a film like Knight Rider, you need someone who can hold his own against a talking car, without trying to be a scene stealer. You don't want Tom Cruise or Arnold Schwarzenegger or Bruce Willis behind the wheel of KITT. Will Smith is in that same mold.

In a few years, let Will Smith host the MTV Movie Awards and put him in a 2-minute comedy clip as KITT's driver. He would be perfect for that. But for an entire movie? I just don't see it.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Victor Kros » Thu Dec 27, 2007 3:24 pm

Good answer. Aside from the obvious racial differences, the point about Will Smith competeing for the spotlight with KITT is a good observation. I am Legend and Ali were roles where Will Smith tried the serious approach to show he has range, however I think Will's strongest performance much like Jim Carrey has always been in comedy. He does his best, even with a poor script like Wild Wild West. I think he's a gifted actor but I don't see him fitting in the shoes of Michael Knight.

Since we're running hypothetical ideas here, what about Vince Vaughn? He's got the height and the wit. He can also be serious when he needs to be like in Psycho and Domestic Disturbance.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Shapeshifter » Thu Dec 27, 2007 3:30 pm

Besides, wouldn't he take about a 20 Million dollar bite out of your budget? (although, he sure can open a movie.)

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Victor Kros » Thu Dec 27, 2007 3:34 pm

Yeah, as it stands right now we've got at least 100 million and growing for the film. I wouldn't expect too many big name actors to be attached unless they agree to take a cut for the sake of wanting to be a part of the project, which some of the bigger actors will sometimes do.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Michael Pajaro » Thu Dec 27, 2007 4:56 pm

A little off topic, but I saw this in Spain and it made me laugh:

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Thu Dec 27, 2007 9:57 pm

hmm what racial differences? the driver for the new movie has to look like David Hasselhoff? Isn't he already going to be playing a Devon type character? :)

Denzel Washington would be good too, but he's too old, I think.

Vince Vaughn, hmm I don't know about that one. Maybe. Every time I see him I think of dodgeball, lmao. :)

How about Jay Hernandez? Jaimie Fox?

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by knightprobe89 » Fri Dec 28, 2007 12:23 am

seeker78 wrote:hmm what racial differences? the driver for the new movie has to look like David Hasselhoff? Isn't he already going to be playing a Devon type character? :)

Denzel Washington would be good too, but he's too old, I think.

Vince Vaughn, hmm I don't know about that one. Maybe. Every time I see him I think of dodgeball, lmao. :)

How about Jay Hernandez? Jaimie Fox?

since were on this strange casting idea, hell why dont we get hulk hogan to play michael knight and kitt can be his tag team wrestling partner.lol :shock:
in glen larson we trust.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:05 am

hmm ok I just read somewhere else that in the Larson movie, the driver of KITT would be Michael Knight's son, if that's right then I can see why you would not want an African-American. But if rebooting the series, I think Will Smith would be excellent if not for the obvious budget issues.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Michael Pajaro » Fri Dec 28, 2007 1:19 am

The theatrical movie will be a "genesis" story, retelling the origins of Michael Knight. The news you may have read is old; at one point Hasselhoff had talked about having Michael Knight's son being in the movie but that fell through.

However, in the NBC made-for-TV movie airing in January, the new driver WILL be Michael Knight's son. Hasselhoff has a small part.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by LadyV2000 » Fri Dec 28, 2007 5:28 pm

knightprobe89 wrote:since were on this strange casting idea, hell why dont we get hulk hogan to play michael knight and kitt can be his tag team wrestling partner.lol :shock:


LOL!!!! :lol: Yeah brother!

I always thought Tom Welling (Smallville) would be a good choice. He's tall, with dark wavy hair and blue eyes, almost just like the Hoff.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by young-nyc » Sat Dec 29, 2007 12:23 am

actually now you mention it, i wouldn't mind seeing tom welling as michael knight.
i just hope it's not ashton kutcher.

and i have to agree, that will smith won't make a good michael knight.
i always pictured MK as a white male, it's like what if they cast Russell wong or Jet Li as MK?
it would be too weird.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Knight Rider Archive » Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:46 am

Since the Larson movie is a reimagining, it's a completely blank slate. Race needn't become an issue -- they just need to pick the right person for the role, black or white. Everything else is going to be different up there on the screen, and it sounds like they want to distance themselves from the Hasselhoff-Michael... this would be an interesting way to do it. There's nothing in the material to demand that Michael Knight/Long is a white man, just as there's nothing to demand that K.I.T.T. is an '82 Trans Am -- he's simply a cop who gets shot in the line of duty and is given a new identity, a new car and a new belief system. That's the story.

Personally, I don't have a problem with Will Smith in the role... if he could avoid all that Will Smith schtick. There's a lot of baggage that would come with putting Will Smith in as the star of this, (and he's getting a little old for it) but I think there could be a lot of positives too. He can do serious, he can do comedy, he can do action, and those are the qualities that are needed for Michael Knight.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 4:04 pm

young-nyc wrote:actually now you mention it, i wouldn't mind seeing tom welling as michael knight.
i just hope it's not ashton kutcher.


I agree, Tom Welling would be good too!

i always pictured MK as a white male, it's like what if they cast Russell wong or Jet Li as MK?
it would be too weird.


Well, I'm not with you there, I think that's where I diverge from most other posters on this. The only time the driver would need to be a white male is if he is supposed to be a direct descendant of MK.

If the movie is a "re-imagining" then you could use anyone as the driver.

Even if it is a continuation, if the driver is just another agent hired by FLAG, then it doesn't matter what he looks like.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 4:05 pm

Knight Rider Archive wrote:Personally, I don't have a problem with Will Smith in the role... He can do serious, he can do comedy, he can do action, and those are the qualities that are needed for Michael Knight.


Yes, exactly. I completely agree. That's what I was saying. :)

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by PHOENIXZERO » Fri Jan 04, 2008 6:25 pm

They need to cast someone who's relatively unknown, casting Will Smith would make this a Will Smith movie, not a Knight Rider movie and besides that he'd want to be paid a lot of money, money that could be better suited elsewhere. Will Smith isn't needed in a movie where the car is likely to be the real star.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Lost Knight » Fri Jan 04, 2008 7:30 pm

I do have a problem with the idea of Will Smith being a driver in the movie. I even think it's an absurd idea. Why? Because while there are valid points about the movie being a blank slate, that doesn't mean everything has to be the opposite of what it once was (and really, the two main ingredients here are the car and the driver). Glen's intention is to have the new car remain in the same "design spirit" of the original Trans Am, and I don't think anyone here can really disagree much with that vision. I think the same mentality should be applying for the driver. Of course, "design spirit" aren't the appropriate words to describe a new actor, though. We all (for the most part) understand that Knight Rider's gimmick is a car of the future, and therefore it's separated from other car-starring franchises like Herbie or The Dukes Of Hazzard, because KR's car always has to stay a few steps ahead of current technology. Otherwise, the '82 Trans Am could simply be reused again and the entire approach changed to be more cartoon-y, like the upcoming Speed Racer film. The bottom line here is that while things need to change, the changes shouldn't be too radical.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Sat Jan 05, 2008 12:03 am

Lost Knight wrote:I do have a problem with the idea of Will Smith being a driver in the movie. I even think it's an absurd idea. Why? Because while there are valid points about the movie being a blank slate, that doesn't mean everything has to be the opposite of what it once was (and really, the two main ingredients here are the car and the driver).


But see, that's where you're wrong about Will Smith.

Will Smith is basically the Hoff of 2007.

The MK character was tough, but not a jock, campy, didn't take himself that seriously, yet was serious when needed.

That's Will Smith right there.

Like in Independence Day, when Will Smith is flying the alien spacecraft, and he says "I have GOT to get me one of these!!!" That is totally a MK type comment. Or MK's common phrase "let's get 'em, KITT!" one of the best guys to say that in the modern era is Will Smith.

Of course, it is true that Smith has a tendency to steal the spotlight. But that's something the director can address.

Smith is one of those guys who is larger than life, YET he also is still small enough that you can see yourself in him. In his movies, you wish you were him. And that's one of the essential qualities of whoever plays the driver of KITT! :)

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Lost Knight » Sat Jan 05, 2008 2:45 am

I see you've completely overlooked my point. You have your opinions and I have mine. My comments are basically just thrown out there in general and not to deter you or anyone else into conforming to what I believe. I think I will leave it at that.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Knight Rider Archive » Sat Jan 05, 2008 5:46 pm

Lost Knight wrote:
I do have a problem with the idea of Will Smith being a driver in the movie. I even think it's an absurd idea. Why? Because while there are valid points about the movie being a blank slate, that doesn't mean everything has to be the opposite of what it once was (and really, the two main ingredients here are the car and the driver).


I wasn't suggesting change for change's sake, just that when they're casting this thing they need to hire whoever best fits the part of Michael Knight as to his character in Larson's script. That might be a white guy, it could be a black actor. Who knows? The original script for the 1982 pilot didn't specifically say Michael Long/Knight was white... will the script for the feature film? Does he need to be white? Interesting issues. As I said before, I'm sure that the actor will need to be able to do "serious", do comedy, do action, and most importantly of all, make us believe that the car is "real"... that the AI is really interacting with him. Hasselhoff doesn't get enough credit for the job he did in all of those areas in the series. Will Smith is a good example of an actor that has all those qualities in movies he has made over the last ten years. Of course, he won't be Michael Knight... he's too old to be a "young loner" now. :)

Again, as this is a reboot, and a new "spin" on the material, I think it's logical that they will want to move away from the Hasselhoff-Michael, not just because of Victor's comments about Larson's opinions about him but because they need to make the audience forget about that interpretation. I guess whoever ends up in the role, some will love it, some will hate it, and the same goes for the car. How it works on the screen is what it's about in the end, and I'm sure they'll make the best decisions for the sake of their project.

Lost Knight wrote:
The bottom line here is that while things need to change, the changes shouldn't be too radical.


I think that the fact that the (feature) movie is being written and exec-produced by Glen Larson, some people are confused about what will be delivered. As Victor has stated, Larson's script will remain faithful to the spirit of the original show. It will not be the original show. It's a reboot, a fresh start, a new take for the 21st Century. Not a continuation, but a new story and universe in which the old show never existed. Of course there will be changes, and some of them will be radical. That's a given. There are a hell of a lot of concepts that will be dropped from the original, and a lot of new material that will be added in its place, and rightfully so. I'm sure that Larson thought long and hard about what worked in the original show, but he will also take into account what works now and act on that. Not change for change's sake, as I said before, but he should not be afraid to make radical changes either if the changes work for the story.

The best example of a reboot I can think of is the 1993 version of The Fugitive. A truly great TV series that was recreated as an excellent movie. Coincidentally, it also had the input of the original creator, Roy Huggins. They took the core elements of the series, updated them, and discarded a wealth of ideas that worked on TV but just couldn't be taken seriously for the film. They changed the way that key events from the series played out, like the murder of the wife, the escape/train crash, and the final capture of the people behind the whole caper, and it didn't matter. The casting didn't cross racial boundaries like we've talked about here, but nobody in the cast resembled their TV counterpart -- and they even changed Lt. Gerard's first name! That didn't matter either. Everything worked in the context of the story, and it sounds like that is what Larson is shooting for with his new interpretation of his old creation.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by seeker78 » Sat Jan 05, 2008 10:47 pm

Knight Rider Archive wrote:I wasn't suggesting change for change's sake, just that when they're casting this thing they need to hire whoever best fits the part of Michael Knight as to his character in Larson's script. That might be a white guy, it could be a black actor. Who knows?


Yes, exactly. I agree. :)

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Lost Knight » Sun Jan 06, 2008 4:07 am

Knight Rider Archive wrote:I wasn't suggesting change for change's sake, just that when they're casting this thing they need to hire whoever best fits the part of Michael Knight as to his character in Larson's script. That might be a white guy, it could be a black actor. Who knows?


If we're to use this same logic, that means K.I.T.T. could be a tank or an SUV. As long as the voice actor fits the part and the car can do the required stunts, why not? This logic misses the point. It means that nothing is sacred. Making too many radical changes diverts away from respect of the original source material. This caters more to brand new fans of the franchise than it does to the die-hard fans who have supported the show for 25+ years. There needs to be more evident traces as to what this new film is built upon. And for the record, if Michael Knight was originally African-American, I'd be arguing the point that the new actor should be, too.
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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Knight Rider Archive » Sun Jan 06, 2008 7:32 am

Lost Knight wrote:This logic misses the point. It means that nothing is sacred. Making too many radical changes diverts away from respect of the original source material.


It's an argument of semantics -- there can (and will) be radical changes, yet the new script will still honour and respect the spirit of the original work. What changes, how many, and how they're executed, will all be up to Larson and the Weinstein Corporation. Whatever happens, the movie, with Larson's involvement or not, will undoubtedly split the fan reactions as much as the NBC project has: some will end up loving it, some will end up hating it, but it will create lots of new fans and interest in Knight Rider regardless of peoples' familiarity with the original show. Unfortunately, whatever creative decisions they make, they can't please everybody.

Lost Knight wrote:This caters more to brand new fans of the franchise than it does to the die-hard fans who have supported the show for 25+ years.


That pretty much sums it up; from a business stand-point, they know they already have our money at the box-office. Everybody on all of these boards are going to see this movie, most more than once. In that respect, it's the new fans that they will be trying to reach out to in order to get behinds on seats at the cinema, and create huge box office returns.

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Re: Will Smith should drive in Larson movie.

Post by Lost Knight » Sun Jan 06, 2008 2:32 pm

Knight Rider Archive wrote:That pretty much sums it up; from a business stand-point, they know they already have our money at the box-office. Everybody on all of these boards are going to see this movie, most more than once. In that respect, it's the new fans that they will be trying to reach out to in order to get behinds on seats at the cinema, and create huge box office returns.


The thing is: since Victor is more or less a liason for Glen and has stressed to him the importance of fan input in choosing the vehicle, that says to me that the creative decisions for this project go beyond money (so far). I wish I could say the same for NBC Universal, in which case I agree with you. How much interference The Weinstein Co. is going to have may involve appealing to the newer fans, but I can only speculate since we haven't read the script. But, based on everything I've read thus far, the script will maintain the same spirit of the original show, which caters more to the original fans. As you said, the questions become: How much to change? How big should the changes be? What should be changed and what should be left alone, if anything?
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