A new version of Fight Club with an all-women underground fight club is currently in the works, set to be released in 2020.
The upcoming film, entitled Chick Fight is being framed as a remake of the original cult classic, as it bears strong similarities to Fight Club in the premise: trauma, destruction of materialistic possessions by fire, and of course, an underground fight club. However, the film looks like it will be just another ‘fighting movie’, complete with stock characters, cliched storylines, and training montages.
Chick Fight is directed by Paul Leyden and produced by Malin Akerman, who will also star in the action comedy alongside Alec Baldwin, the “reclusive trainer”. Check. Bella Thorne will play one of the most brutal fighters in the ring. Check again. Sound familiar?
As reported by Deadline, the plot seems slightly baffling:
Akerman stars as Anna, who still hasn’t reconciled with the recent death of her adored mother. She’s just discovered that her loving and supportive father is gay, and she accidentally burns down her uninsured coffee shop after learning a thrown joint and a spilled bottle of moonshine don’t mix.
Knowing Anna needs to be abruptly shaken and stirred from her deep funk, her best friend takes her to an all-women underground fight club, where she encounters an eclectic cast of characters.
I’m an avid feminist who entirely supports more female-led films, especially seeing as women make up around 33% of Hollywood leads. But I want those films to represent women well; the use of the word “chick” to refer to a woman in 2019 just feels slightly archaic, as if it just walked out of a tired old pseudo-feminist, ‘girl power’ narrative of the early 2000s. Also, the ‘dead mother’ trope is similarly well-worn in film. For once, can’t we just let our mothers live in films?
Furthermore, I wish that the film industry would devote time and energy to creating original and complex stories for women, not just lazily retelling the past narratives of men with new female characters. In the eminently wise and relevant words of Rosamund Pike, female characters shouldn’t just get the “sloppy seconds” of men.
Perhaps I’m being too harsh. After all, the film may be excused for its lack of originality and ludicrousness because it is an indie action comedy. The upcoming film might even be able to create a compelling and uniquely non-stereotypical narrative for its female characters and amend Fight Club‘s weak representation of women. It may even acquire a status in film history independent of its inspiration and predecessor.
We won’t have to wait too long to answer these ponderings; Chick Fight begins filming in January 2020 for an unconfirmed release date later in the year.
To read about one student’s ingenious Fight Club essay, click here.