Robert Mark Kamen is an American, who wrote “The Karate Kid” franchise in the ’80s, “Gladiator” (no, not the one with Russell Crowe) and “Lethal Weapon 3” in the ’90s, before somehow ending up in France polishing English dialogue and making plots somewhat logical for Luc Besson. Okay, pretty much he made Besson’s “shit happens and this is what results” style of movie plotting just a little bit more coherent, which if you’ve seen enough Besson movies, you know is a major challenge. Kamen is also one of the writers, along with Besson, on the Liam Neeson mega sleeper hit “Taken”, and using that success as a launching pad, Kamen has now sold an original pitch called “Vengeance” to CBS Films.
“Basically, it’s a contemporary revenge love story — what happens when violence meets love,” Kamen said. “The main characters are 20 and Italian, and there are themes that echo films like ‘The Godfather.’ It’s about family loyalty and how much someone owes their family and the past. It’s not set in the gangster milieu but just outside it.”
The action film is described as “very much in the vein of ‘Taken'”, and will be produced on “a modest budget”, which in Hollywood parlance probably means enough money to buy a neighborhood.
Meanwhile, in the same article, Kamen and Besson are confirmed as writing a sequel to “Taken”. That isn’t a surprise. Besson knows a good thing when he sees it, and sequels are just good business. But what is a surprise is that, also according to the article, Besson is now waiting for Liam Neeson, star of the original, to be available to shoot the sequel. Which means Neeson is definitely back for “Taken 2”.