I do like it when a project comes out of leftfield – and they don’t come much more leftfield than this: Steven Spielberg and Will Smith are in talks to direct and star in a remake of Chan-wook Park’s belting 2004 revenge thriller, Oldboy. DreamWorks is currently in negotiations to secure the remake rights, and the movie would be distributed by Universal. Spielberg has started looking for a writer. So it looks like it’s real, it’s happening. And I’m utterly stunned.

Not least because, as well as being compelling, bold, and utterly brilliant, Oldboy is the sort of uncompromising, dark thriller that would represent a huge risk for the previously attached team of Justin Lin and Nic Cage, let alone the most bankable director-star team in the world. Which, if you’re wondering, is exactly what Smith and Spielberg represent.

The original revolves around a South Korean man who is imprisoned, seemingly without reason, for fifteen years. When he’s released, also without warning, he embarks on a crusade to find his kidnapper and kill him, working his way through a number of low-level criminals and finding unlikely love in the shape of a young girl before the climax brings revelations that I suspect might be changed for the Hollywood remake.

But then again, you never know – Spielberg and Smith have both shown a willingness to explore their dark sides in recent years, and Oldboy could afford them that opportunity like never before. It’ll be interesting to see which elements are held over from the original – will Spielberg attempt to emulate the one-shot fight scene when Min-sok Choi takes on a gang of goons in a corridor armed only with a hammer? Will Smith eat an octopus alive?

It may be a while before we find out, but we’re keen to see what happens with this. Spielberg and Smith have apparently been looking for something to do together for a while (continuing Spielberg’s habit of working with the biggest movie star in the world, from Tom Hanks to Tom Cruise and now to Smith) – but nobody ever thought it would be Oldboy. Wow.