There has arguably never been a better time to be a beloved ’80s property than right now. Hollywood is fueling a nostalgia craze that shows no signs of slowing down, with Carmen Sandiego getting a new movie and cartoon series, The Highlander reboot moving forward and even a celebration of ’80s pop culture hitting the big screen in this weekend’s Ready Player One. But one reboot that has had trouble getting the engine started is the Knight Rider movie. Not long ago, Kevin Hart and John Cena’s names were attached to a comedic reboot of the TV series, but we haven’t heard much since. Now, with his movie Blockers hitting theaters next weekend, John Cena has shed a little light on the status of Knight Rider, saying:
That certainly does not sound encouraging. Speaking with ScreenRant, John Cena does not sound optimistic about the chances of the movie happening. This isn’t some niche indy project either. John Cena is a household name that is continuing to grow his Hollywood presence, and Knight Rider is a known property, not to mention the popularity of Kevin Hart, who was also attached as the voice of KITT. However there are a lot of factors that go into getting a movie made and there must be something holding Knight Rider back. Although there is some draft of the script out there if John Cena read it and enjoyed it. With Cena’s star continuing to grow, maybe he can help move this thing forward in the future if it is a project that he really believes in.
When the news of John Cena and Kevin Hart’s possible attachment came out, it was reported that the reboot film would take a comedic approach akin to the Jump Street movies from Phil Lord and Chris Miller. That would be the optimal way to go should this movie come to fruition. John Cena as Michael Knight dealing with a hilarious and surly Kevin Hart as KITT would lean into the campiness that is inherent in the premise. But this isn’t the only iteration of a Knight Rider continuation that has been floated about in recent years. Machinima and Justin Lin were working on some sort of digital series reboot that original Michael Knight David Hasselhoff teased his involvement in.
On the movie front, even Chris Pratt was once floated for a Knight Rider reboot, and David Hasselhoff has pitched everything from a Fast and the Furious-inspired continuation of the series to a dark and gritty Logan-esque evolution. For the time being, it seems that this movie is in development hell. And with self-driving cars advancing all the time and even Alexa being incorporated into vehicles, the premise of Knight Rider grows less futuristic by the day. So a really strong take, perhaps one that makes fun of the often calamitous nature of this nascent tech, will be needed to sell this movie.
While a Knight Rider TV or film reboot/continuation may or may not ever happen, you can still see John Cena on cinema screens. He stars in Blockers, in theaters on April 6, and the Transformers spinoff Bumblebee, in theaters on December 21.