Death Race (2008)

Jason Statham
Director: Paul W.S. Anderson

U.S. Opening Date: August 22nd, 2008


Jason Statham leads the cast of an action-thriller set in the post-industrial wasteland of tomorrow, with the world's most brutal sporting event as its backdrop. A penitentiary full of felons has inspired the jailers to create a grisly pastime ripe for lucrative kickbacks. Now, adrenalized inmates, a global audience hungry for televised violence and a spectacular arena come together to form the "Death Race."

Three-time speedway champion Jensen Ames (Statham) is an expert at survival in the harsh landscape that has become our country. Just as he thinks he has turned his life around, the ex-con is framed for a gruesome murder he didn't commit. Forced to don the mask of the mythical driver Frankenstein -- a crowd favorite who seems impossible to kill -- Ames is given an easy choice by Terminal Island's warden (Joan Allen): suit up or rot away in a cell.

His face hidden by a metallic mask, one convict will be put through an insane three-day challenge. Ames must survive a gauntlet of the most vicious criminals in the country's toughest prison to claim the prize of freedom. Driving a monster car outfitted with machine guns, flamethrowers and grenade launchers, one desperate man will destroy anything in his path to win the most twisted spectator sport on Earth.

— Some sources:


A remake of the camp 1975 black comedy Death Race 2000 about a cross-country race in the point isn't which contestant gets to the finish line first, but whom kills the most pedestrians along the way (you get higher points for "easy" targets such as pensioners and toddlers). "In the year 2000 hit and running is no longer a crime," as the movie's tagline explained. "It's the National Sport!"

Alien vs. Predator hack Paul W.S. Anderson will write and direct. At one point Tom Cruise was set to star, but now Jason Statham takes over the driving.

"Jason Statham's playing Frankenstein and Tyrese Gibson is Machine Gun Joe," says director Paul WS Anderson. "And Joan Allen is gonna kick Statham's ass!"

"The original was so much about decimating pedestrians that the actual race was almost irrelevant, and I want to restore that," the director continues. "Set in 2020, ours is an ultraviolent, no-holds-barred race with heavily armed Escalades, Ferraris and Aston Martins."

Something tells us that the original's Black comedy elements will be chucked out in favor of the brainless action that Anderson, a director devoid of any sense of irony or humour, specializes in. Sigh . . .






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