As a great (or perfectly enjoyable after three beers) man once said, everything moves in cycles. So twice a century, the ocean lets us know how small we really are. A winter storm comes out of Antarctica, tearing up the Pacific. It sends a huge swell north 2,000 miles. And suddenly, Gerard Butler is no longer starring in the Point Break remake. Both Variety and The Hollywood Reporter confirm that Butler is no longer attached to take over for Patrick Swayze as Bodhi—the zen guru whose philosophy is as extreme as the sports he practices—in the update of the 1991 actioner, despite the role offering all of the athletic equipment, opportunities for shirtlessness, and lowered expectations that are the hallmarks of any Gerard Butler movie.
The reasons for Butler’s departure are currently unknown, but speculatively attributed to a “confluence of factors,” ranging from Butler’s timetable for filming the Olympus Has Fallen sequel to “creative differences,” which you can have on a Point Break remake starring Gerard Butler, apparently. Or perhaps someone told Butler that locals rule, and that yuppie insects like him shouldn’t be surfing the break. Perhaps he realized that if you want the ultimate, you gotta be willing to pay the ultimate price: resolving your scheduling conflicts. But whatever the real explanation, the movie plans to press forward to meet its start date anyway, and has already resolved to find a new Swayze stand-in to forge a semi-erotic, sports-based kinship with the film’s Keanu Reeves replacement, Luke Bracey.
That’s because, for producers, this was never about money. It was about “us against the system”—that system that kills the human spirit by saying, “A 21st-century extreme sports remake of Point Break sounds dumb.” These producers, they stand for something. To those dead souls, inching along the freeway in their metal coffins thinking about how dumb it is, they’ll show them that the human spirit is still alive, by finding a less in-demand star than Gerard Butler to jump off things.