Actor/Director John Turturro wants to reprise his role from The Big Lebowski in a new movie. He's currently seeking permission from the Coen Brothers (among others) and is keen to start work on a spin-off in 2015.
Turturro starred in the Coen Brothers’ 1998 crime-comedy about an unemployed Los Angeles bowler known as “The Dude”. The original film starred Jeff Bridges as His Dudeness (El Duderino If you’re not into the whole brevity thing), John Goodman, Julianne Moore, Steve Buscemi, Sam Elliot, and the late great Philip Seymour Hoffman. Turturro played rival bowler and convicted sex offender, [the] Jesus Quintana (“Eight-year-olds, dude”).
In a recent chat on Q with Jian Ghomeshi, Turturro talked about the evolution of Jesus and how he didn’t “get” The Big Lebowski the first time he saw it:
It will be interesting to see if Turturro can get permission to use the character from writer-directors, Joel and Ethan Coen. Although the Coen brothers haven’t made sequels to any of their previous films, this particular project would have Turturro going at it solo. When asked about Turturro’s insistance to bring back Jesus, Ethan Coen said:
“John Turturro, who wants it, talks to us incessantly about doing a sequel about his (bowler) character Jesus…He even has the story worked out, which he’s pitched to us a few times, but I can’t really remember it… No, I don’t see it in our future.”
Despite the Coens’ reluctance to make sequels, they did agree to the Fargo TV series (one of the best new shows on television) that just finished on FX. A pitch like this probably wouldn’t go over well for most people, but Turturro is a Coen veteran, and has worked with them for years. If anyone could get them to greenlight a spin-off, it would be someone like Turturro, who has a history with the filmmakers.
Many of the cast members have been more than willing to discuss the film’s cult status, especially The Dude himself, Jeff Bridges, who once confessed to Rolling Stone that he can’t stop watching The Big Lebowski when it’s on television:
“You know, I rarely will watch my movies when they come on TV, but when Lebowski comes on I’ll say, ‘Oh, I’ll just wait until Turturro licks the ball and then I’ll do my clicking.’ But it’s like The Godfather — when The Godfather comes on I have that same kind of feeling, then you get hooked.”
The Dude truly does abide. Would Jesus be able to carry an entire film by himself? Without the Coen touch or The Dude himself, it’s difficult to say until more production info is made public. Regardless, here’s hoping for a 2015 release date.
Images: Universal Pictures, Youtube