The upcoming Power Rangers movie has been slowly moving forward since this time last year. After the announcement of the project’s existence, it landed a pair of screenwriters, and Lionsgate has even carved out a release date. Only now, however, has the studio finally started zeroing in of the filmmaker who would be helming the film – and right now it looks like it will be Project Almanac director Dean Israelite.
The Wrap was the first to report this news, saying that Israelite is in negotiations to sign on to what’s expected to be a blockbuster for the summer 2016 season. Should he agree to direct Power Rangers, he will have to jump into the gig pretty much immediately, as production will have to start in the next couple of months if the studio wants to stick with their current release date.
As the report points out, there are multiple reasons why Dean Israelite makes sense as someone that Lionsgate would look to for the helm of Power Rangers. His experience on his directorial debut, Project Almanac, demonstrated that he could work with a young ensemble, navigate an original science-fiction story, and work with a more limited budget. That being said, it’s worth pointing out that the found footage format of the time travel movie helped keep costs down – and the end results weren’t exactly super successful. Released back in January, the feature didn’t get a very positive critical response, and didn’t perform spectacularly at the box office, ultimately bringing in about $32 million worldwide.
Not much at all is known about the direction that the Power Rangers movie is currently working in, though Ashley Miller and Zack Stentz (screenwriters on Thorand X-Men: First Class) are on-board and writing the script. The original series followed a group of high school students who, with some cool supersuits and the guidance of a mentor named Zordon, fight against the forces of evil and protect the world from monsters. The incredible success of the franchise has already resulted in two live-action films – 1995’s Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie and 1997’sTurbo: A Power Rangers Movie – but it’s expected that this new feature is a reboot that goes in a new direction.
Late last year, Dean Israelite was hired to work on the upcoming remake ofWargames, but if he is going to make Power Rangers that project is obviously going to have to be put on hold. With the Lionsgate film dated for July 22, 2016, we can probably expect that it will go into production at some point this summer – meaning that we should start hearing about casting in the next few months. In the meantime, do you think Israelite has what it takes to bring Power Rangers back to the big screen?