In 2000, we saw martial arts legend Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson team up in the old west homage Shanghai Noon, a film that gave a lighthearted update to the Western genre and remixed it with a Jackie Chan action flick. The result was pretty great stuff. As a fan of the Western genre, I found a lot to love in some of the nods they made to Spaghetti Western classics (such as the character Nathan Van Cleef), and it’s difficult to go wrong with a Jackie Chan action scene. What’s more, I thought Chan and Wilson had great chemistry.
A few years later, in 2003, we saw a sequel in Shanghai Knights, which took Chan and Wilson across the sea to Great Britain, where they fought against the power-hungry swordmaster Littlefinger — I mean, Lord Rathbone. The movie itself, to me, was a step down from the original. No longer did I have my love of Westerns to fall back on, but even I have to admit that the fight choreography featured some strong moments from Chan.
Though despite my “okay” response to the sequel, I didn’t meet any thoughts of seeing another sequel with any real excitement. I’d had my fill. Almost fifteen years later, I think I still can say I’ve had my fill, but that’s not to say that I’m one hundred percent dismissive of a sequel. Given the right circumstances, I could actually see it working.
Well, at the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what I think, because THR reported yesterday that MGM has officially hired Napoleon Dynamite director Jared Hess to helm the threequel entitled Shanghai Dawn.
While Jared Hess is best known for Napoleon Dynamite, he is comingoff an upcoming release of the Zach Galafianakis comedy, Masterminds, which has been in the can for some time, but has faced numerous delays due to Relativity Media going bankrupt.
I’m personally a fan of Napoleon Dynamite, though I couldn’t speak to any of Hess’ other films. Masterminds is notable in that it’s Hess’ most recent flick, as it would be the one to look at as a contemporary reference for his talent. I suppose the quality of that movie — as well as Chan and Wilson’s involvement — will be directly responsible for whether or not I’m excited for this film.
And speaking of Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson, the pair are currently in negotiations to reprise their roles as Chon Wang and Roy O’Bannon, respectively, though I can’t imagine the studio would see fit to revisit the franchise should these two not hop on board, but we’ll see what happens with that.
Given that the first film took place in the U.S., and the second took place in Britain, I can only imagine the third film would take them to a completely different country (China, maybe?), but as of right now, plot details are quite limited.
What do you think? Are you excited to see Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson return to the big screen together in Shanghai Dawn? Let us know in the comments down below!
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