Fact: Taken at face value, this MacGruber movie is an awful idea — pure, unadulterated awful. It is a mediocre sketch that someone (Lorne Michaels) thinks could be fodder for a full-length feature. The last time this happened, we got Night at the Roxbury.
But despite reason and logic, it would appear as if the SNL crew is moving forward with the adaptation, which will begin shooting in New Mexico next month. The film’s saving grace is that it has at its disposal the directorial talents of Jorma Taccone, who was most recently seen as Cha-Ka in Land of the Lost. He’s also 1/3 of the Lonely Island crew and one of Saturday Night Live‘s lead scribes. Also coming out of the SNL writing room is John Solomon, who is co-writing the MacGruber script with Taccone and star Will Forte. Together, they’ve come up with the following premise:
The legendary, much decorated MacGruber is pulled out of retirement as a monk in Ecuador by a colonel, who needs him once more to fight on behalf of his country. This time the mission involves going up against the evil Cunth, who has a nuclear warhead; the mission is personal because Cunth killed MacGruber’s bride.
Today we’ve learned via The Hollywood Reporter that former actor turned ‘Where Are They Know?’ regular Val Kilmer will play the role of the villain, Cunth. Ryan Phillippe has also joined the cast in the role of Piper, an Army officer who has to team up with MacGruber to take on the evil Cunth.
Also starring will be Kristen Wiig, who plays MacGruber’s assistant in the SNL sketches.
As you know, the whole idea behind MacGruber the sketch is that it is a send-up of MacGuyver, in which the industrious hero is also completely incompetent. He ultimately ends up causing an explosion that — as far as we can tell — kills himself and everyone involved. Somehow, I can’t see a way in which the movie would hold true to the source in that regard. You can’t blow up your main character in the first five minutes of the film… or can you?