Many modern late night talk show hosts are failed actors -- comedians who tried to do the Hollywood thing and couldn't cut it. Like Jimmy Fallon. And Jay Leno. But Conan O'Brien never went through the film phase, and so, after he leaves The Tonight Show, he should get back at Leno by starring in a remake of ...

Collision Course

The 1989 original, which paired Leno up with The Karate Kid's Pat Morita as mismatched partners ("as different as hot dogs and sushi") investigating some kind of auto industry case, is considered one of the worst buddy action films of all time. It killed the comedian and Doritos spokeman's film career -- save for some voice work in animated features -- making way for his gig as the replacement for Johnny Carson (director Lewis Teague was pretty much ruined by the movie, too). I always wonder if it had somehow been a hit if Leno would have stayed in the movies and David Letterman would have won the Tonight Show gig as he desired.

Anyway, the remake would put Conan in Leno's role, while Jackie Chan could once again fill in for Morita -- as he's doing in the upcoming Karate Kid remake. Or, like that redo, the new Collision Course could take place in China, with Conan being the fish out of water (one recurring joke would involve his height, of course). The plot could easily be updated in order to reflect the fact that China has now surpassed the U.S. in the manufacture of automobiles. The villain, played by Chris Sarandon in the original, would be a Chinese automaker who has stolen some kind of engine part from Detroit.

Even if the makers of the new version run out of money, as the original's producers did, it will be an improvement. Conan is certainly not a great thespian, but he'll still do a better job than Leno. Meanwhile, he'll be the funniest partner for Chan since Owen Wilson (I wish I could be saying since Steve Coogan). Mainly because the duo is as different as hot dogs and egg rolls. Unlike the first film, which claimed as much, the remake will actually be the "funniest, wackiest, buddy-buddy cop comedy to crash onto the screen."

Check out the trailer for Jay's awful version below: