John Rambo may have kicked the crap out of everybody and everything from overzealous small town cops to Russian attack choppers and even Southeast Asian warlords, but even Sylvester Stallone’s action hero badass seemingly can’t stand up to the latest Hollywood trend of adapting movie franchises for TV.
We’ve been hearing talk of a fifth and final Rambo flick for a while now, with all kinds of story pitches being attempted (at one stage Rambo was going to have track a genetically engineered monster – seriously!). But according to a report from Deadline, Rambo: Final Blood is now on hold and instead FOX has signed a deal with titular star Sylvester Stallone to produce a TV series adaptation titled Rambo: New Blood. It’s said that this TV show would still focus on Stallone’s John Rambo, but he will be sharing the screen with his estranged ex-Navy SEAL son J.R. Yes, somehow in all that time he spent leveling jungles and helping the Taliban rise to power in Afghanistan, Rambo also found time to have a kid.
While I’m not the biggest fan of the Rambo and son angle (Thanks, A Good Day To Die Hard. Thanks), there is some old school ass kicking hope as the series will be written by Die Hard and The Fugitive screenwriter Jeb Stuart. Deadline also goes on to state that unlike recent attempts at movie to TV adaptations like Beverly Hills Cop and Limitless, Stallone won’t just occasionally cameo as he passes the torch to J.R., but is expected to be a key character on the show though that is still not officially confirmed yet.
The film series began in 1982 with Rambo: First Blood, a low-profile and surprisingly weighty adaptation of David Morrell’s action drama novel. Rambo: First Blood – Part 2 and Rambo III would both increasingly ditch the first film’s drama aspects until only it was just a pure action flick. 20 years later and 2008’s Rambo, which Stallone directed himself, would bring back some of that drama. And also disintegrate people with a .50 calibre machine gun. The last movie was a moderate success, making $113 million off a $50 million budget, and there’s been talks of a follow-up movie ever since.
Development on a Rambo TV series actually began back in 2013 already, but then Stallone was not involved at all. This series – which is being developed by Entertainment One and Avi Lerner’s Millennium Films – will actually be the second time John Rambo has appeared on the small screen. Back in the mid-1980’s an animated series, Rambo: The Force of Freedom, aired briefly and taught me that you could never go into battle without tying your bootlaces and headband even when they were already tied to begin with.
There’s no word yet on when this new series will be hitting the airwaves. So what do you think of a Rambo TV series? Is this something you would watch or you afraid it will be too PG-13 to live up to the movies?
Last Updated: December 2, 2015