CANNES -- WWE star Dave Bautista and UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre are stepping into the ring for Kickboxer.
The project should draw keen interest at the Cannes Film Market, where Brian O'Shea's The Exchange will begin shopping the film to foreign buyers later this week. The 1989 film, directed by Mark DiSalle and considered a cult classic, starred Jean-Claude Van Damme and world kickboxing champion Dennis Alexio.
Producer Ted Field of Radar Pictures has been plotting the remake for a year, signing Hong Kong filmmaker Stephen Fung to direct the film. Fung's credits include the wildly popular Chinese martial arts movies Tai Chai Zero (2012) and Tai Chi Hero (2012).
Kickboxer also has signed stuntman and martial artist Alain Moussi as its lead. Moussi has worked in a number of Hollywood event films, including Fox's upcoming X-Men: Days of Future Past. His past credits include Pacific Rim and White House Down.
"Alain is a star and will be an amazing leading man," said Field. "Like Vin [Diesel] in Riddick, Alain will make this movie very special and this Kickboxer will be the start of an amazing franchise."
St. Pierre and Bautista's film credits include Captain America: The Winter Soldier and the upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy, respectively.
Kickboxer tells the story of David and Kurt Sloan, the descendants of a well-known Venice, Calif., fighting dynasty. When David wins the Karate World Championship, a promoter lures him to Hong Kong, despite his brother's protestations that the man is a crook. When Kurt travels to Thailand to meet his brother, he discovers he has died, and seeks his revenge.
“We have a visionary director, a strong Hollywood producer, great cast and an action-packed script based on a well known property," said O'Shea. "What more can you ask for?”
Dimitri Logothetis and Nick Celozzi are also producers. Mike Weber and Peter Meyer are executive producing alongside O’Shea and the Exchange's Jeff Bowler and Nat McCormick.