After several changes of directorship, several drafts of the screenplay and losing its lead actor, many wondered if the ‘Scarface’ remake would ever get off the ground.

The 1938 'Scarface' remake was one of Al Pacino's most iconic roles.
The 1983 Scarface is one of the most popular gangster movies of all time

Universal’s Scarface Remake has Seen Many Setbacks

Luca Guadagnino, famed director of Call Me By Your Name, signed on to direct the Scarface remake, making him the third director to be in talks with Universal. The studio has been in development on the movie since 2011. And with the director turnover many wondered if the movie would happen at all.

Now that Guadagnino has taken the reins, and Hollywood is scheduled to resume production, we might see casting begin soon. The one actor committed to the film, Diego Luna (Rogue One), recently backed out of the project. The fandom website Looper started the conversation about who should replace him.

The most popular fan option for Tony seems to be Pedro Pascal, known for his work on Narcos, Game of Thrones and The Mandalorian. They also nominated Gael Garcia Bernal from Mozart in the Jungle, and Michael Pena as their “dark horse” selection.

What to Expect from the Scarface Remake

The story for the Scarface remake has gone through several revisions as well. It’s earlier drafts were written by Gareth Dunnet-Alcocer, Jonathan Herman and Paul Attanasio, but it’s Joel and Ethan Coen – who have been on the project the last three years – that will submit the final draft. The Coen brothers are well-known for their unique films, and Guadagnino recently put a fresh spin in his remake of the horror classic Suspiria. Suffice to say this will be a new take on the old tale.

The famous Al Pacino Scarface was itself a remake of the 1932 movie of the same name. Scarface (1932) tells the story of Tony Camonte (Paul Muni) an Italian immigrant who rises up the ranks of the criminal underground, running bootlegged hooch for the Chicago mob. Scarface (1983) follows Tony Montana, a Cuban immigrant who chases power in the drug cartel in Miami, during the cocaine-fuelled 80s.

Universal's latest 'Scarface' remake will in fact be the studio's second remake, as 'Scarface' (1983) was a remake of 'Scarface' (1932).
Scarface (1932) starred Paul Muni and Osgood Perkins.

The Coen brothers were hesitant to make the Scarface remake another story about an immigrant entering a criminal enterprise. There were fears the film would undergo scrutiny for cultural insensitivity. Ultimately Tony’s immigrant status remains. The remake will take place in Los Angeles, and Tony will be from Mexico.

The themes from Scarface will remain. Tony will look to the criminal underworld to achieve a twisted version of the American dream. And I’m sure just like in the previous instalments, his greed and lust for power will result in a Julius Caesar like rise to glory, building an empire that collapses on him.