Robert Redford may soon be reunited on screen with Paul Newman but don’t expect a sequel to “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” or “The Sting,” which paired one of Hollywood’s most popular double acts three decades ago.
“All these years went by and nobody came up with any ideas that were anything but corny and kind of low grade so we just decided probably that wasn’t going to happen,” Redford said.
“But now there’s something rolling around that we’re talking about it, and the real question is whether he can remember his lines or not,” the 68-year-old Redford said in a dig at Newman who turned 80 this year.
Media reports earlier this year suggested the two would pair up in an adaptation of Bill Bryson’s travel book “A Walk in the Woods,” the story of the author’s hike through the American wilderness with a friend.
Redford said he was superstitious about discussing details of projects that were not finalized.
“I think Paul and I are probably alike in that we’re reluctant to talk about something that is not real yet, but we are talking about it,” he told reporters in New York while promoting his new film “An Unfinished Life.”
Redford said it was surprising considering Hollywood’s penchant for remakes that nothing had come to fruition since the mob and gambling film “The Sting” in 1973 and the 1969 hit “Butch Cassidy,” about two bank robbers who flee to Bolivia.
“The stuff that came to us wasn’t any good,” Redford said. ”(They said) can you do a sequel to ‘The Sting?’ No, leave that one alone ... don’t try to milk it.”
“What about a sequel to ‘Butch Cassidy?’ Well the guys died in it, what is it going to be, a spiritual film? Well how about a prequel? That’s pretty desperate.”
One film that he is planning a sequel to is “The Candidate” from 1972, in which he played a Democratic Party candidate for the Senate who has no hope of winning and who finds his ideals compromised by the realities of politics.
Redford said in the sequel he will play the same character 30 years on, who is now president of the United States.
“Right now I’m frightened for my country,” he said in one of several political asides during a news conference by the actor who makes no secret of his liberal leanings.
“Actors have every right to speak out but they carry more responsibility to know what they’re talking about,” he told Reuters in an interview, adding that he enjoyed “lobbing grenades from a distance.”
But he said he had no intention of stepping into active politics like action star Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is now governor of California.
“I would have to be just consumed with ego and self-absorption. When you enter the political arena it’s so full of compromise and so full of knots, you tie yourself up,” he said.