CHiPS Movie Gets Michael Pena as Ponch; Dax Shepard Will Direct
Warner Bros. is finally moving forward with its big screen adaptation of the 1970s NBC cop series CHiPs with Michael Pena set to play Ponch and Dax Shepard as his partner Jon. Shepard will also write and direct the action comedy.
The story will revolve around two motorcycle cops patrolling modern day Los Angeles. The original series ran on NBC from 1977 to 1982, with Erik Estrada portraying the iconic Frank "Ponch" Poncherello and Larry Wilcox as his partner Officer Jon Baker. Rick Rosner created the original series.
Warner Bros. attempted to turn CHiPs into a movie a few years ago, with That '70s Show star Wilmer Valderrama set to take on the role of Ponch. The actor is rumored to have shown up in the office of executive Greg Silverman wearing the tight-fighting patrol uniform, exclaiming, "Funny, right?"
He apparently walked out of the office with the job. Though both The Dukes of Hazzard and Starsky & Hutch managed to make it to the big screen around the same time, the original iteration of the CHiPs movie stalled out.
This new take on CHiPs is described as a cross between Bad Boys and Lethal Weapon, not a parody of the genre as the earlier version suggested. While Dax Shepard may be best known for his role on Parenthood, his directorial effort Hit and Run proved he was capable of handling the needed motorcycle stunts. He's also a professional race car driver and knows his way around a motorcycle. He is expected to perform a lot of his own stunts in the movie.