‘American Gigolo’ Director Paul Schrader Calls Showtime’s TV Adaptation “A Terrible Idea”

No stranger to hot takes, Paul Schrader has a new target in his sight: his own movie.

To be more exact, an upcoming television adaptation for his 1980 movie. Showtime released a trailer earlier this week for American Gigolo, starring Jon Bernthal, Gretchen Mol and Rosie O’Donnell.

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The director of the original, starring Richard Gere and Lauren Hutton, took to his Facebook page to lambaste the new adaptation produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, saying he had no involvement with the series and that he won’t be watching it.

“After the Showtime trailer appeared online I’ve been asked if I am involved,” Schrader wrote. “The answer is no.”

Paramount apparently called Schrader years ago fielding interest from the Oscar-nominated director on adapting the original film that centers on a male escort accused of murder.

“I replied that I thought it was a terrible idea–times had changed, internet porn had redefined male sex work, viruses, etc. I couldn’t imagine Julian Kay working a Hen Party,” Schrader wrote. “I thought that was the end of it.”

Then, Schrader was informed Jerry Bruckheimer and Paramount had the rights to re-do American Gigolo without his consent. His only option was to accept their cash and move along.

“They did not want my involvement. Here were my options: (1) take $50G and not be involved (2) take $0 and not be involved (3) threaten an expensive and futile lawsuit and not be involved,” Schrader wrote. “I took the $50G.”

Schrader wrote he has no plans to watch the series and doesn’t think he “could be objective about it and, even if I could, it’s too much agita.”

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