Sorry to all you Rodney Dangerfield fans looking to complain about your beloved 1983 inheritance comedy being added to the remake pile. Maybe another time. This is actually a pitch for an English-language redo of the current Swedish hit Snabba Cash, the English title for which is...

Easy Money

This pitch is probably unnecessary given the way Hollywood works. Daniel Espinosa's crime thriller will definitely be remade in English. Not only does it involve easily translated subject matter, but it's got franchise potential. According to Variety, Easy Money (Snabba Cash) has been deemed a hit at home, grossing $2.3 million in its first five days. Comparatively, Sweden's top-grossing movie of 2009, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, took in less than half a two million bucks in its first weekend, according to Box Office Mojo (Sony has already announced it's remaking The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, by the way). And due to the success of Easy Money, two sequels have been greenlit by the original film's producer.
The sequels aren't that surprising given that Easy Money is based on the first novel in a trilogy from writer Jens Lapidus. The second book is called Never F*ck Up and the third, still being written, is still untitled. They're set in the Stockholm underworld and specifically follow the story of three characters involved in the city's cocaine trade and the Yugoslav mafia. One is a young Swedish man from the country who moves to the city and ends up a coke dealer. The second guy is an Latino who has just broken out of prison, where he was serving time as a scapegoat for the mafia. Number three is a Yugoslav mob henchman.

Sounds like just another gangster flick, which is almost a reason not to adapt it for subtitle-hating American audience. Just as remaking Oscar-winning foreign film Tsotsi in the U.S. would just result in a generic urban thriller, so would transplanting and translating Easy Money. Then again, few could have imagined, before Scorsese came on board to direct, that an English-language remake of Hong Kong's Infernal Affairs was a good idea. Yet The Departedis both awesome and an Oscar-winner for Best Picture.

The novel of Easy Money will reportedly be published in the U.S. later this year, which is another sign it's ripe for remaking here. As for the original film being distributed here, we'll probably have to wait and see if it's picked up for North American distribution when it's up for sale at the Berlin Film Festival next month.

As with most foreign films, I'd actually much rather see the original, even in the case of a generic-seeming crime film, because it's far more interesting for me to be introduced to this specific underworld I'm unfamiliar with than see it rehashed and reset in New York City, or wherever. But sometimes I like to look out for my less-foreign-film-inclined friends who'd rather not read a movie.

Check out the trailer for the original Swedish film (sorry, no subtitles) below:
Snabba Cash TEASER

Snabba Cash | MySpace Video
categories Cinematical