Director Richard Donner, 90, confirms he's to return for 'Lethal Weapon 5'

Ben Arnold
·Contributor
·3 min read
Mel Gibson et Danny Glover lors du tournage du film 'L'arme Fatale 2' réalisé par Richard Donner en mars 1989 aux Etats-Unis. (Photo by Bertrand LAFORET/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in Lethal Weapon 2 (Credit: Bertrand LAFORET/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

Richard Donner will be back behind the camera for Lethal Weapon 5.

The filmmaker, who turned 90 in April this year, confirmed the news in an interview with The Daily Telegraph.

“This is the final one,” he said. “It's both my privilege and duty to put it to bed. It's exciting, actually... Hahaha! It's the last one, I'll promise you that.”

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Mel Gibson, aka Sergeant Martin Riggs from the veteran action franchise, had previously said that Donner was back on board.

However, with Donner's advancing years, and the fact he hasn’t directed a movie since 2006's 16 Blocks with Bruce Willis, it perhaps required some confirmation from the man himself.

“The man who was behind all that – the man who brought it to the screen and gave it the goodies is working on it right now: Richard Donner. He's a legend,” 64-year-old Gibson told Good Morning America in November.

“I don't want to give away the plot on the script I read, but I found the plot had very strong relevance to some of the things that are happening today. I can say that.

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - JUNE 07:  (L-R) Danny Glover, Richard Donner and Mel Gibson arrive at The Academy Celebrates Filmmaker Richard Donner at Samuel Goldwyn Theater on June 7, 2017 in Beverly Hills, California.  (Photo by Joshua Blanchard/Getty Images)
Danny Glover, Richard Donner and Mel Gibson in Beverly Hills, California, 2017 (Credit: Joshua Blanchard/Getty Images)

“But that was in January. History changes so fast... But yes, there's been talk about it. There is something of a plan.”

Meanwhile, Danny Glover, who played Riggs’s long-suffering partner Roger Murtaugh in the movies, told Variety that he has seen a script, and that it resonates with current events.

“I found the plot had very strong relevance to some of things that are happening today. I can say that,” he said.

“It would be interesting to see how we take this within the political framework we are in; the economic framework that we are in.

“And especially that framework as opposed to the communities that have been affected by the kind of police violence, the kind of police standards, and the power that they exert as well.

“What would be interesting from that vantage point is what that attempt could be like at this particular moment.”

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The project will be produced by Dan Lin, who was an executive producer on the rebooted Lethal Weapon TV series, which saw Clayne Crawford and Damon Wayans take on the roles of Riggs and Murtaugh.

Donner, who directed movies like Superman, Superman II, Scrooged and The Goonies, helmed the first Lethal Weapon movie in 1987.

It spawned three more sequels, with Donner behind the camera for each, culminating with Lethal Weapon 4 in 1998, starring Gibson and Glover alongside Joe Pesci, Rene Russo, Chris Rock and, in his US film debut, Jet Li.

Despite increasingly mixed reviews as the franchise lumbered on, the movies all did decent business at the box office, making almost $1 billion in all.

Watch: Lethal Weapon 5 ‘on the way’ says Gibson