One upcoming movie that I’m starting to get more and more excited about is Sylvester Stallone’s next action flick The Expendables. It won’t be hitting theatres until 2010, but the cast is turning into a veritable who’s who of both current and former action stars including Jason Statham, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren, Mickey Rourke, Randy Couture, Ben Kingsley, Forest Whitaker, and of course, Sly himself. The only people missing from this thing are Arnold Schwarzenegger, Steven Seagal, and Jean-Claude Van Damme. But wait a minute… apparently Stallone did actually offer Van Damme a role in the movie, and he turned it down!
In a recent interview with Total Film, JCVD had this to say about his new “artistic requirements” for signing onto a project:
“Stallone gave me a part in his next movie, but I ask him about the subject, about the story. He said, ‘You’re gonna make lots of money.’ I don’t want to hear that, I want to hear what was my character. He was unable to tell what it’s going to be.”
“[Stallone said:] ‘You know, uh, well, the fighting will be good.’ [So I said:] ‘Sly, what is my character?’ So I didn’t do the movie.”
You know, I thought JCVD was a decent flick and a great way for Van Damme to bring himself out of the direct-to-video doldrums, but let’s not kid ourselves here: he’s not going to be winning any Oscars anytime soon. More to the point, people still want to see him in action movies. If Rambo is any indication, The Expendables has the potential to be one of the best action movies in a long time, and if he thinks he is too good for such a thing, he is sadly mistaken. Mark my words Jean-Claude… you’re going to regret passing this one up!