And to think that Danny Glover’s Roger Murtaugh was already complaining about being “too old for this shit” in the first Lethal Weapon, way back in 1987. That was 33 years ago, but it’s apparently not stopping anyone involved in making Lethal Weapon 5 happen. And perhaps most incredulously of all, original director Richard Donner, he of The Omen, The Goonies and Superman fame, has confirmed that he’ll be returning as the Lethal Weapon 5 director as well. Donner’s role had previously been suggested by returning cast members, but given that fact that he’ll likely be 91 years old by the time filming started, it’s easy to imagine circumstances forcing Donner to abandon the project … particularly given that we’re still in the middle of a deadly pandemic.
The news would perhaps be less surprising if Donner had been working regularly in recent years, but at this point it’s been 14 years since he’s personally directed a feature film. And indeed, since Lethal Weapon 4 was released in 1998, Donner has only directed two relatively low-profile films: 2003’s Timeline and 2006’s 16 Blocks. For him to return after all this time for a major franchise film, tentatively referred to as Lethal Finale, would be major news even if he wasn’t more than 90 years old. Nevertheless, Donner confirmed he was working on the film in speaking with The Daily Telegraph, saying: “This is the final one. It’s both my privilege and duty to put it to bed. It’s exciting, actually… Hahaha! It’s the last one, I’ll promise you that.”
There’s no indication yet of when Lethal Weapon 5 would start filming, but one has to imagine that the desire would be to wait until the COVID-19 vaccine has become more widely available, including access by all the major figures involved. After all, the franchise’s two stars, Mel Gibson and Glover, are also 64 and 74 years old at this point respectively. That’s a lot of important, high-risk figures on this particular project.
We’ll certainly be curious to see how this project progresses, as a result. We’ll bring you more info on Lethal Weapon 5 as it arrives.