Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Zach Braff is Fletch

Not so long ago Kevin Smith was going to do this series with Jason Lee starring as sneaky reporter/conman Irwin M. Fletcher, who would do anything and be anybody to get the story. Smith was unable to get those crazy Weinstein brothers to agree to sign Lee up. On his blog, Kevin responded to angry fans by sighting Lee's unfortunate ability to pick lackluster vehicles like 'Dreamcatcher', 'A Guy Thing' and 'Big Trouble,' as the reason Lee wouldn't be cast. Kevin had big plans of leaving Jay and Silent Bob behind and embarking on a career as a mature filmmaker. He first step out into the brave new world was 'Jersey Girl.' A movie that had you questioning everything, especially what kind of agents Mr. Smith and Mr. Afleck have.

Time has passed. The planets have realigned. Kevin Smith has refound his career, just where he had gloriously left it, in the good hands of Mr. S Bob and his life partner/love slave Jay. Former stunt skateboarder Jason Lee has erupted into a fiery, fame volcano as everyone's favorite karmic red-neck and Carson Daily worshiper, 'Earl,' all over the TV as one of NBC's only hits last season.

Now I ask you, have not those planets aligned for a reason? Have not these two rejuvenated souls been given another chance to make a Fletch movie starring Jason Lee with all his attitude on full power and Kevin's verbal assault machine cranking that handy script dial up to 11?


Nope.

'Scrubs' creator Bill Lawrence (one of NBC's only other funny shows) has been passed the ball, while Kevin Smith went to nurse his wounds. He has, rather competently, cast 'Scrubs' star Zach Braff a the trouble finding Mr. Fletcher. Braff, deserves it. He's funny and talented and while his film 'Garden State' was shy of the brilliance of it's trailer, nailing this role could elevate him to another level of possibilities. I've never seen Mr. Braff play a more aggressive role like Fletch, so I can't see it in him. That doesn't mean it's not there.

I'm sad that I won't see Jason Lee in a role that everyone felt was made for him, but as long as he can keep the sweet hearted energy in 'Earl' for a few more years, I'm sure he can snag a good movie deal on the way.

The Hollywood Reporter has the scoop HERE!

'Fletch' lives as Lawrence, Braff scrub in
By Gregg Goldstein


NEW YORK -- "Scrubs" creator Bill Lawrence is writing and directing a prequel to the '80s franchise "Fletch," and if he has his way, Zach Braff will star in the title role.

The Weinstein Co. has signed Lawrence to helm and adapt Gregory Mcdonald's 1985 comic-mystery novel "Fletch Won," which follows the irreverent detective from his early days as a ne'er-do-well junior newspaper reporter to his partnership with a crime reporter to solve a murder.


Mcdonald's best-sellers were brought to the screen in 1985's "Fletch" and 1989's "Fletch Lives," both starring Chevy Chase.

"Zach is perfect for the role," Lawrence said in an interview from his Los Angeles office, where Braff sat laughing in the background. "I'm going to use all my pull trying to make him do it." Filming is expected to start in April once the current season of "Scrubs" completes filming. No cast members have been signed yet.

It was Braff who helped bring Lawrence on board by suggesting his "Scrubs" executive producer to Harvey Weinstein, leading to talks between the pair over the past six months. "Zach knows I can recite the original 'Fletch' movie line for line," said Lawrence, who also has read all of Mcdonald's "Fletch" novels.

The director is well aware of the cult surrounding the books and films, which seems to weigh heavily on him. "My closest friends from high school don't care about my career," he said. "This is the only job I've ever gotten where every one of them said, 'Congratulations,' and then said, 'Don't fuck it up.' "

Lawrence plans to make his "Fletch" with a bit more edge. "There were definitely broader, sketchier parts in the earlier films," he said. "I'd compare this one more to 'Beverly Hills Cop,' where there was a sense of real jeopardy. Like 'Batman Begins,' I (also) think people will enjoy seeing how Irwin Fletcher became Fletch."




Let me play Uncle Fletch? Please?

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