Mike Fleming

Hardly a big revelation, the report that Bruce Willis is negotiating to play the original G.I. Joe, Joe Colton, in Paramount’s G.I. Joe: Retaliation. This courtship has been going on for about six weeks or more, and Deadline was the first to tell you that Willis was the guy that Paramount was chasing for the Colton role way back on July 1. That was when we broke news that Friday Night Lights‘ Adrianne Palicki had been cast as the female lead by director Jon M. Chu. At the time the studio claimed that Willis wasn’t the only actor being eyed, but I’ve only heard his name for that role and I believe the conversation was always with Willis. He has time to squeeze this in before gearing up for another Die Hard, with the studio about to set a director from a short list of Attack the Block’s Joe Cornish, Fast Five helmer Justin Lin, Drive director Nicolas Winding Refn and Max Payne helmer John Moore. This positions Willis to have his third franchise, at age 56, as Summit develops a sequel to his 2010 sleeper hit Red.