We’ve been hearing for a while now that different filmmakers want to make a female version of The Expendables, with at least two competing projects bubbling away in development. One of them – Millennium Films’ The ExpendaBelles – has a director in the shape of Legally Blonde/Killers’ Robert Luketic.
And yes, the title – which sounds like something spoof addicts Aaron Seltzer and Jason Friedberg would use to describe whatever rip-off mockery they're already working on – is apparently hanging around, still locked on to the script from Blonde duo Kirsten Smith and Karen McCullah.
There is also a basic plot line out there via Deadline, so get a load of this: “When America’s Navy SEALs are wiped out trying to penetrate the island lair of a deadly despot who has captured one of the world’s top nuclear scientists, it becomes clear that there is no such thing as the right man for the job and that this is a mission so impossible that only women can handle it. The only way in: some of the world’s deadliest female operatives must pose as high-class call-girls shipped in by private plane to satisfy a dictator–and instead save the scientist and the day.” Because of course they have to pose as call girls.
Word is that Luketic will start assembling his cast now ready for a summer shoot. Producer Avi Lerner has previously said he has a long wish list that includes Meryl Streep, Cameron Diaz and Milla Jovovich, but the final line-up is likely to be quite different.
As for the still untitled competitor, which comes from producer Adi Shankar? That has yet to announce a director, though Katee Sackhoff, who has been attached for a while, told us last year that she’s ready to work on it. “I just read it, it's fucking brilliant and I freaked out. It's one of the coolest scripts I've ever read. It's not campy at all, it's just kicking ass.” From the sounds of it, ExpendaBelles is looking to go a route just slightly camper than Butlins, so the films are likely to be very different if they both make it to our screens…