Jason Statham is Parker?

News about a Parker movie project started dribbling out a couple of months ago. I dutifully sent it out over Twitter, but didn’t think much more about it–I’ve heard of a few Parker movie and TV projects over the years and they never seem to get out of development hell.

But it looks like this one might actually be happening. From Variety:

Jason Statham is in negotiations to star in the thriller “Parker” with Taylor Hackford directing for Sierra/Affinity, Incentive Filmed Entertainment and Sidney Kimmel Entertainment.

I got this tip from two readers, one of whom liked the choice of Statham and one of whom was far less enthused. I don’t really have an opinion because I don’t know that much about Jason Statham. He certainly looks the part, but the only flicks he’s been in that I’ve seen are Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels (which I loved) and Snatch (which I hated). However, I saw them both when they first came out and my memories have faded to the point that I don’t recall Statham’s parts very clearly.

Taylor Hackford has some fine work on his résumé, along with quite a few films I’ve never heard of.

One cause for concern is this:

Pic, based on the book series by Donald Westlake, revolves around a thief who, though at times is forced to be a killer, still lives by a code of honor that includes never stealing money from people who need it.

I realize the urge to give Parker some softer qualities is hard to resist, but if you’re going to do that, why not just make up some other thief? I hope this is simply a misunderstanding by the reporter.

This news has kindled some related thoughts that I hope to incorporate into a post and launch a discussion about later this week, but for now I’ll limit myself to simply talking about the movie project. It’s interesting that we aren’t told what book if any the movie is going to be based on. I’m assuming they’re not going to do The Hunter again. Are they going to use a book, or create an original Parker story? (Update: It’s now being reported that the new movie will also be based on The Hunter.)

With the understanding that this one may never get off the ground, and that we have very limited information at this point (three months ago, Brian De Palma was supposed to be directing), what do you think?