LOS ANGELES — Exile Distribution will distribute what Howard Levine calls "possibly the most controversial parody to come out in years," a takeoff of the classic 1976 film "Taxi Driver."
Directed by Sinister X, "Taxxxi Driver: The Parody" stars Tommy Pistol in the lead role of Travis Bickle and includes a high-profile supporting cast. Exile has made a deal to distribute the film from a newly formed production company that will be formally announced in the coming weeks.
The Exile co-owner Levine said the parody is as "painstakingly" close to the original as possible. The Hollywood film, directed by Martin Scorcese, starred Robert DeNiro, Albert Brooks and Jodie Foster and was nominated for four Academy Awards.
"What we were really going for is attention to detail, and that's what we accomplished," Levine told XBIZ. "We really went for a re-creation of the original movie. Tommy Pistol is Travis Bickle in the movie. He really did a great job. Lily LaBeau did an unbelievable job as Betsy. Evan Stone played Sport, and Ron Jeremy did a cameo for Wizard."
The movie also features XBIZ New Starlet of the Year Chanel Preston, Sean Michaels, Nikki Charm, Jessie Andrews and Misty Stone.
"There’s some really great parts in 'Taxi Driver' where sex is the perfect fit," Levine reasoned. "Like when [Travis] goes into the porno theater."
Levine also addressed how the adult version approached the Jodie Foster character, Iris, who is an underage prostitute in the original movie.
"People are asking me, 'How are you portraying Iris?'" Levine said. "Iris is a very small part of the original story. The story focuses on Travis Bickle, that’s what 'Taxi Driver' is about. Obviously, Iris is not portraryed as an underage hooker in the parody.
"If [the "Brady Bunch" character] Cindy Brady can be made to be 18, and the Cosby kids can be made to be over 18 [for adult parodies], I really think the Iris character can be made to be over 18."
"Taxxxi Driver: The Parody" is due for release in mid-June.
"All those TV shows — the comedies — they’re great. They sell really well. We wanted to take something that is a little more iconic in the way of great motion pictures and turn it into a parody," Levine said. "It was a big-budget, week-and-a-half shoot that I think everybody will be quite impressed with."