First Ben Stiller's Starsky & Hutch, now The Sweeney. Yes, shouty '70s coppers may be long gone but they're definitely not forgotten in movieland. Another telly-to-cinema adaptation of London's crime-fighting finest is winging to the big screen. This time it's got a more honest-to-blinding Blighty feel to it, and judging by this first look at its two stars, a comedy Snoop Dogg cameo is seriously unlikely.
The new tough-cop/even-tougher-cop combo is Ray Winstone as Jack Regan and Ben Drew - better known as Brit-winner Plan B - as George Carter. Anyone old enough to remember the old TV series, and its spin-off movie, will remember John Thaw and Dennis Waterman clobbering many a villain as the pair of unorthodox Flying Squad* men. These men didn't take prisoners or do things by the book. Just when red tape thought it was safe to re-emerge, here they come again.
Overseeing it is all is The Firm director Nick Love, a man who knows his way around a punchy urban thriller. He'll be updating the setting to the Big Smoke of today. "For me, Ray Winstone and Ben Drew are the ultimate casting for a character-driven action thriller set in London today," Love says. "Ben brings an intelligence and sensitivity that is crucial for The Sweeney."
It's a welcome return for Danny Boyle's old screenwriting mucker John Hodge too. He'll be on scripting duties. Expect motors, expect shooters, and expect tight-fit leather jackets. Guv.
* According to Cockneypedia, The Sweeney (Todd) is named after rhyming slang for 'Flying Squad'.