New Line Cinema has set plans for a hip-hop-flavored remake of the cult classic 1973 reggae crime drama "The Harder They Come." The original film, which helped launch the career of reggae artist Jimmy

New Line Cinema has set plans for a hip-hop-flavored remake of the cult classic 1973 reggae crime drama "The Harder They Come." The original film, which helped launch the career of reggae artist Jimmy Cliff and spawned a legendary soundtrack, tells the cautionary tale of an ambitious young singer who comes from a small town and tries to make it in the music business. But as he struggles to make it, he gets caught up in the criminal underworld and becomes a legendary outlaw.

"This film has elements of a gangster flick, a musical, and a rags-to-riches story with a very strong soundtrack that may include some remakes of songs from the original," producer Sara Risher said. "This will be a film with real crossover potential and is not just going to be geared to rap audiences."

The lead role will likely be filled by a black male rapper, though not necessarily an established star, Risher said. Risher, a former New Line production president, also is developing the teen music drama "Heart of Summer" for the studio.