Entertainment Weekly reports that Paramount issued this statement regarding Efron's decision: "'Footloose' is a project we've longed to see re-booted for a new generation. While Zac is no longer attached, we remain excited and committed to the collective brain trust of Kenny Ortega, Neil Meron and Craig Zaden, who will reinvigorate the franchise. Their fresh take on the film will undoubtedly be filled with the same kind of breakout performances that we've come to expect from them." No replacement has been named for Efron.
As previously reported, Peter Sollett will rewrite Jon Hartmere's original "Footloose" script, and Zadan and Meron have been brought on to co-produce the film with Dylan Sellers.
Some of the film's original tunes, which include "Let's Hear It for the Boy," "Almost Paradise," "Holding Out for a Hero" and, of course, "Footloose," are expected to be part of the new version, although new songs are also being penned for the remake.
The original Herb Ross-directed "Footloose" starred a young Kevin Bacon and spawned a number-one selling soundtrack.
Footloose was also seen on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers Theatre, where it opened in October 1998, playing 18 previews and 709 regular performances before closing July 2, 2000. Directed by Walter Bobbie, the cast featured Jeremy Kushnier as Ren, the rebellious teenager who moves to a small town where dance is forbidden.