Paul Schrader on 'American Gigolo' Remake: "I Got Paid Some Money Not to Be Involved"

"I'm a quote-unquote consultant," says the legendary screenwriter, who wrote and directed the American escort classic.
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'American Gigolo'

Paul Schrader will be credited as an executive consultant on Showtime's small-screen remake of his 1980 movie American Gigolo. But the legendary screenwriter tells THR that his involvement in the project ends there.

"I'm a quote-unquote consultant, which meant that I got paid some money not to be involved," says Schrader, who wrote and directed the male escort classic starring Richard Gere and Lauren Hutton.

Instead, Schrader is focused on his own projects, like the Nicolas Cage starrer Dog Eat Dog, which opens Nov. 11. That film, about a crew of ex-cons who are hired by a Cleveland mafioso to kidnap the baby of a rival mobster, offers some redemption for Schrader and Cage, who wound up disowning their previous collaboration, 2014's Dying of the Light.

"Nicky and I had a terrible experience on a film before this, which was taken away from us by the producers and butchered. We wanted to work together again and make it right," adds Schrader. "I said, 'We don't have enough money, but I have final cut and we can make any film we want. So let's get imaginative.'"

As for the American Gigolo series, the outspoken filmmaker says, "I don't even know if I'll watch it. We'll see." But he wouldn't be so laissez-faire about a new Taxi Driver. "Marty [Scorsese] and I have been able to block several attempts to update or redo Taxi Driver," he says. "I'm very glad that there is no sequel or remake of that film in the works."

A version of this story first appeared in the Nov. 25 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. To receive the magazine, click here to subscribe.

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