The pressure has dropped and Hollywood finally has a new idea. Despite a massive surge in pre-production issues over the last few years, Katrina: The Movie has finally gotten the green light.
In a recent interview, Gekko & Co. Studios producer Ari Shuudnaught, who was the man behind the Rush Hour trilogy, said the film will star the duo of Chris Tucker and Jackie Chan in the same roles as from that franchise but will not necessarily be a direct continuation of Rush Hour 3.
“As of right now, it’s set to begin production sometime next year. We now have a very good, very funny script, and we have our stars in Chris Tucker, Jackie Chan, and, I’m proud to announce, Kayne West, who has been brilliant, a once-in-a-generation talent like Einstein or Shakespeare, and will really take this picture to the next level. I’m very excited about Gush Hour, as we call it back at the studios.”
The buddy comedy will once again focus on the hilarious exploits of Detective James Carter (Tucker) and Detective Inspector Yang Naing Lee (Chan).
When the Chinese embassy in Los Angeles receives a mysterious package containing a white powdery substance on top of fried donuts that put one of its top diplomats into a severe food coma, Chinese Consul Han once again calls in Hong Kong Detective Inspector Lee, who once again teams up with the wise-cracking Detective Carter, to investigate. The duo travel to New Orleans to find the source of the package, said to be a food smuggling ring run by the city’s corrupt politicians. Just as the detectives begin closing in on their search for the masterminds, the ringleaders decide to use the approaching Hurricane Katrina as the ultimate fixer for destroying all the evidence and to make sure Carter and Lee don’t solve the case. In order to bring those responsible to justice, the pair must stay one step ahead of petty meter maids, Huge Ass Beer sign guys with 3-for-1 specials, strip club promoters, “I know where you got ‘dem shoes” hustlers, tainted water, minefield-like streets, erroneous bills, and lazy city officials, all trying to impede their every step. Can Carter and Lee find out the identities of the powerful crime lords and stop them before the evidence — and the case — is sunk? Kayne West (West) appears again and again throughout.
When asked if the film may appear insensitive and that Hollywood is exploiting the devastating event, Shuudnaught said definitely not.
“If we don’t [make it], someone else will. It took 85 years before (Steven) Spielberg made Titanic, which was a very tragic story, but, let’s be serious, it ended up being one of the most lucrative films ever released and made a lot of people a lot of money. And our society today moves so much faster now that it’s unthinkable to wait 85 years before exploiting an event. This idea was ripe for the picking. It was obvious. I mean, look, they have money-making games, inflatables, and all kinds of things for Titanic now. So, does making a Hurricane Katrina-based movie make sense? Absolutely. In fact, I think it makes dollars and cents — millions and millions of them. Frankly, I think it’s going to be a direct hit on what audiences want and completely wipe away the box office record holders with a strong, lasting effect.”
Katrina: The Movie has not been given a release date but it will be filmed in Hollywood South itself. We’ll continue to track the path of its production and give updates as they come in.