Production on the adaptation of the Dark Horse Comics' R.I.P.D. will soon get underway with Jeff Bridges and Ryan Reynolds in the leads. A number of screenplay pages have been floating around online recently that went out casting directors recently, because they are currently casting for supporting roles. These pages have shed some light on the direction of the film. According to io9, the film has a feel of Men In Black and Ghostbusters.
Here are some excerpts of a script review. BEWARE SPOILERS AHEAD:
In R.I.P.D., Reynolds plays Nick Walker, a Chicago cop who gets gunned down by his partner, Simon Hawes. And then Walker wakes up in the afterlife, where he's offered a chance to join a secret elite police force: the Rest In Peace Division. So many people are dying nowadays, due to the soaring population, that some of the dead manage to escape from going into the light, and instead hide out on Earth. Walker's job is to spend the next hundred years hunting down the dead on Earth.
There are just two rules: You can't kill a living person, and you can't interact with any of the people from your previous life. To make the second rule especially different, Walker is sent back to duty in Chicago, the city he patrolled when he was alive.
Walker gets paired with a veteran partner: Bocephus "Bo" Pulsipher, a former Wild West lawman who died back in the 1800s. There are many, many funny scenes of Bo showing Nick the ropes, including the two of them watching Nick's funeral and Bo commenting on the mediocre turnout. Bo is kind of a grouchy old stick-in-the-mud who idolizes Hoyt Stenson, the lawman he partnered with when he was alive. He's sort of a gruff mentor with a hefty dose of the crazy — and the dynamic between Nick and Bo is not that dissimilar to the Will Smith/Tommy Lee Jones relationship in the first Men In Black.
Zach Galifianakis was initally set to play the role of Bo, but had to drop out. Galifianakis is great, but Bridges is amazing. The review goes on to talk about how the R.I.P.D. move among people:
...R.I.P.D. move among us unnoticed is that they are camouflaged: when people look at Nick and Bo, they see Nick as an elderly Chinese man. And they see Bo as a statuesque beautiful woman with giant breasts. In one scene, Nick tries to go talk to his widow, but she just sees a Chinese man talking gibberish to her. In other scenes, men keep coming up to Jeff Bridges and begging him to dance in their music videos.
And there are lots of other silly touches that add to the M.I.B. feeling of R.I.P.D. Like, all the dead people are unaccountably scared of Indian food — even the mention of Chicken Tikka Masala makes them hulk out and turn into their monster selves. And dead people love fish, for some reason. There are some hilarious scenes where Bo and Nick go and interrogate a suspected dead person and ask him a series of Blade Runner-esque questions that just happen to mention Indian food. Also, one of their main informants is a guy who has spent 100 years waiting for the Chicago Cubs to win the World Series, so he can finally die happy. (Reynolds torments him by suggesting the Cubs' losing streak is due to the presence of "your rotting soul" in the bleachers.)
Oh, and whenever the secretly dead get upset or want to exert more power, they turn into monsters, with blobs and tentacles and stuff. They're sort of like monster ghosts, akin to Ghostbusters, but also not that different than the monsters that the M.I.B. hunt in their movies. The R.I.P.D. hunt them down with special guns, firing "soulkiller" bullets, and other special ordinance. There is a lot of mayhem in this film, as the undead cops chase ghosts all over the city and they trash everything in their path.Without giving too much away, there's more to Hawes than just a dirty cop, and it turns out that a mistake that Nick made when he was alive has a bearing on a potentially apocalyptic case the R.I.P.D. is investigating now.
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