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The TAKEN Sequel Nabs Neeson!!

Merrick here...


THIS piece at Deadline is tracking developments on the oft-mentioned, slowly developing TAKEN sequel.  

Although Luc Besson has already teamed with longtime collaborator Robert Mark Kamen to script the picture, one fly in the ointment....monkey in the wrench...pain in the ass...remained:  there appeared to be a very good chance Liam Neeson wouldn't be reprising the Bryan Mills role he originated in Pierre Morel's 2008 original.

Deadline says this impasse wasn't due to money matters or interest - but scheduling conflicts which seemed so insurmountable that Besson apparently worked-up a wish list of contenders to replace Neeson (Mickey Rourke, Ralph Fiennes, Ray Winstone, Sean Bean and Jason Isaacs).

An update to Deadline's article now reveals that Neeson will, indeed, star in the project.  

Liam Neeson and Luc Besson have come to a meeting of the minds and they have worked out the scheduling snafu that made him iffy for Taken 2. Neeson's reps at CAA are now closing the deal for Neeson to reprise what has become a signature role. Production is now being eyed for year end or beginning of 2012. 

Find more insight into the matter HERE.  Although now moot, that replacement list was interesting to be sure.  My personal favorite would've been Jason Isaacs  - a commanding screen presence who feels like he's yet to land a truly breakout role.  

At the moment, Olivier Megaton - a director with one of the most badass names I've ever heard - is in talks to direct the new TAKEN.  Megaton previously helmed the Besson-produced/co-written TRANSPORTER 3.  


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