If you spent the recent 30th anniversary of Police Academy wondering where the comedy franchise’s reboot is already, it seems that New Line might have been doing the same. And now they’ve revealed, via The Hollywood Reporter, that Key & Peele stars Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele are on board as producers of the next movie, which seems to be more of a continuation with an all new cast than a remake. That means we shouldn’t be wondering if the duo will be taking over the roles of Hightower and Jones, respectively, or — less racist in thought — pondering if one of them will be the new Mahoney.
Still, we’re in the mood to play casting director, so let’s look at who among Key and Peele’s pals might be right for a part, if not any of the parts we love from the previous seven installments. A number of the guys they’ve worked with are actually old members of The State, which means they’ve all done their share of Police Academy antics on Reno 911 (so have both Key and Peele, as a matter of fact). Another comedic actor they’ve both worked with on more than a few occasions is Rob Huebel, who I could easily see as playing an antagonistic Captain Harris type. And how about their new friend Liam Neeson (aka Liam Neesons) as the academy commandant?
For most of the new ensemble, though, they should go for unknowns, young comedians with some shtick or specialty that would make them interesting recruits. These need to be one-dimensional characters with an extreme trait that seems either too perfect for law enforcement (i.e. Hightower’s strength and Tackleberry’s love for weaponry) or too ill-fitting for the job (the nerdy guy, his wife, the soft-spoken woman, the obese coward, etc.). There will need to be a resident idiot, who is henchman to the Huebel (or whoever) jerk. That won’t be recycling from the Police Academy movies so much as sticking to pure comedy tradition.
I’d also be happy with Key and Peele playing every part. Every single one. Especially if one is a magician cop.
The duo is currently on the rise as major players in Hollywood as it is, even before this news. They’ve got a fourth season of their hit Comedy Central sketch show arriving this fall, and with 22 episodes it’ll be a much bigger run than the last three. They’re also going to appear together in four episodes of the series Fargo, which premieres later this month, they have an animated Key & Peele spin-off in the works focused on the characters Vandaveon and Mike and they’re supposed to be working with Judd Apatow on another movie idea. Let’s hope they don’t screw up this simple reboot task and blow the promising future they’re building for themselves.