Fittingly, considering how fast the character was in his first film, things moved quickly for a Steven Spielberg film based around Frank Bullitt, who was ironically brought to the screen by Steve McQueen in 1968.
We brought you the news in February that Spielberg was developing a new film that would take the stubborn cop and lead him to a new story for Warner Bros.
Deadline has now heard that Bradley Cooper has struck a deal to play the man, putting his impressive charisma up against McQueen’s. Quite challenging…
In the original Peter Yates film, the story finds ambitious Senator Walter Chalmers (Robert Vaughn) aiming to take down mob boss Pete Ross (Vic Tayback) with the help of the testimony of hot-tempered outlaw brother Johnny (Pat Renella). The witness is in protective custody in San Francisco under the supervision of police lieutenant Frank Bullitt (McQueen). When a pair of assassins enter the scene, Bullitt follows their trail through a maze of complications and double crosses.
The result is widely considered one of the most iconic car chases in film history, zooming through the streets of San Francisco and jumping over its many hills, all set to memorable Lalo Schifrin music.
No details have been released on what Bullitt will do in the new film, but it’s likely that it will involve fast cars, hard beats, and lots of action. Josh Springer, who wrote ‘The Post’ for Spielberg, is developing the script with the director.
It marks Spielberg and Cooper finally finding a way to work together face-to-face after a few false starts. Spielberg originally boarded ‘American Sniper’ (which Cooper starred in) before leaving before filming, to be replaced by Clint Eastwood. Then there’s the more recent ‘Maestro’, about the legendary composer Leonard Bernstein.
Like ‘Sniper’, Spielberg was considering directing, but began to reconsider. And after seeing how Cooper handled shooting (and starring in) the Oscar-winning “A Star is Born,” he confidently handed the reins to the actor, who did double duty on the biopic. It will be coming out via Netflix next year.
And this potential ‘Bullitt’ collaboration has been rattling around for a while like a 1968 Ford Mustang engine. Spielberg and Cooper have apparently spent some time spitting out what might be suitable for outing during a pandemic (perhaps via zoom like everyone else) and figuring out if it’s something they’d like to see. do.
It looks like they’ve worked things out, though the movie is still in development for now.
As for Spielberg, his semi-autobiographical drama ‘The Fablemans’ is now in limited release, ahead of a broader platform schedule next week.