Plot details have emerged for Robert Downey Jr.’s new film franchise based on the Parker novel series, planned to be a neo-noir crime thriller. First introduced in the 1962 film The Hunter and created by Donald E. Westlake under the pseudonym Richard Stark, Parker is a ruthless professional criminal with few traditional redeeming qualities, except that he is unwilling to deceive his professional counterpart.
Parker went on to appear in 24 of the 28 novels Westlake wrote under his pseudonym, although the character’s name was never revealed and much of his backstory remained a mystery.
Since his literary debut, Parker has made numerous big screen appearances over the years. Interestingly, only one adaptation has kept the character’s name intact in the form of Parker, led by Jason Statham, debuting to mixed reviews in 2013 due to the toning down of the original novel. The Parker novels will be given new life under the direction of Shane Black and Robert Downey Jr.