Shaft Reboot Deal May Change the Way Urban-Themed Films Are Made

A second reboot of the blaxploitation classic, Shaft, may change the way urban-themed films are funded and distributed. Netflix is teaming up with New Line Cinema for the as-yet untitled Shaft reboot. Black-ish creator Kenya Barris wrote the script and Ride Along’s Tim Story has been tapped to direct.

Deadline reports that the streaming giant will collaborate with New Line to launch the film in a groundbreaking deal. Netflix will pay over half of the $30 million budget and in turn will get international rights to the film, along with the ability to stream the film outside the US two weeks after New Line releases it theatrically.

New Line and Netflix did not give a comment to Deadline, but sources said the film will follow a traditional domestic roll out from theatrical to subscription video on demand (SVOD) and DVD through Warner Bros. The deal may serve as a blueprint for filmmakers who make urban-themed or genre films that normally do most of their box office business in the United States.

According to Deadline, what the deal does in particular for the untitled Shaft reboot is, it gives Story more of a budget for the film than he would have normally received from New Line.

Samuel L Jackson, who starred in John Singleton’s 2000 reboot, will reprise his role as John Shaft, the nephew of Richard Roundtree’s Shaft from the 1971 original directed by Gordon Parks. Jackson will be joined by Jessie T. Usher (Independence Day: Resurgence, Starz’ Survivor’s Remorse), who will play Shaft’s son. Roundtree, the dedicated Dad on Being Mary Jane, is still one bad mutha and will also reprise his iconic role.

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