After 15 years off the road, BMW Films is bringing back its series of short films with Clive Owen reprising his role as “The Driver.”
The new short, titled The Escape, is being directed by Neill Blomkamp (District 9, Elysium) and co-stars Dakota Fanning, Jon Bernthal and Vera Farmiga. Presented as an homage to the original series — which featured Owen and such A-list directors as Alejandro G. Inarritu, Ang Lee and the late John Frankenheimer — The Escape will premiere on Oct. 23 at 6:00 p.m. EST on BMWFilms.com.
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Launched in 2001, BMW Films’ “The Hire” was a series of eight groundbreaking online short films starring Clive Owen as an enigmatic driver for hire. Each film was a unique story, with David Fincher and Ridley and Tony Scott acting as executive producers. The films were helmed by acclaimed directors John Frankenheimer, Ang Lee, Wong Kar Wai, Guy Ritchie, Alejandro González Iñárritu, John Woo, Joe Carnahan and Tony Scott, and featured stars like Madonna, Gary Oldman, Don Cheadle, Mickey Rourke, F. Murray Abraham and James Brown. Available only online and released four years before the invention of YouTube, the films were critically-acclaimed and fifteen years later still have a cult following.
BMW not only brought back Owen for The Escape but also creative director Bruce Bildsten, executive producer Brian DiLorenzo and David Carter, who in addition to serving as a creative consultant, co-wrote the film alongside Blomkamp. The trio who were part of the BCMA Panel at the recent Entertainment Lions Festival, then brought together a group of producers and designers to bring the film to life.