Mos Def joins Bruce Willis in "16 Blocks".
April 29, 2005
Three cheers for Mos Def, the most upredictable rapper / actor
in Hollywood! Fresh from rave reviews in the freshly released
Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy, good old Mos has signed
on for another a-typical role – opposite Bruce Willis in
the action buddy comedy, 16 Blocks.
Empire was thrilled recently to discover that the project was
indeed going ahead in the skilled action filmmaking hands of Richard
Donner. This in itself would have been enough to have us queuing
for tickets, but the news that Def is to now play a “14
time loser with a sunny side-up disposition” has really
pricked up our ears.
For those who don’t know or can’t recall, the premise
has Willis as a grizzled, heart attack waiting to happen New York
cop who has to bring Mos’ witness 16 blocks (see what they
did there?) across town for processing. Of course, there are forces
that don’t want this to happen – cue action. It sent
warm memories of 48 Hours and Midnight Run coursing through Empire's
brain, what with truly great buddy movies being somewhat thin
on the ground of late.
The really refreshing part of this is that once again, the character
Def is set to play is a million miles from his own self. All to
often we see rappers get cast - possibly in the name of ‘authenticity’,
or possibly because it’s not too much of a stretch - as
streetwise badasses, but after his suitably alien turn as Ford
Prefect, this would appear to be another great choice –
both on his part, and that of 16 Blocks’ casting director.
Basically, we can’t wait for this to get here, but it’s
looking like we might have to. According to Willis’ slate,
Die Hard 4.0 is next in line for production. Although, given that
he’s not carrying that entire film (those Timberlake rumours
are still circulating), he may be available sooner than usual.
Def also hasThe Italian Job II to complete, and while production
was due to commence in Toronto last week, if they're still casting
things may have fallen behind. We’re guessing maybe, if
we’re lucky, summer 2006?