I can't see a full remake working - they could pull a Memoirs of a Geisha and cast Chinese actors in the Japanese roles. On the other hand, Death Note does have a couple of non-Japanese main characters, which is good news for the English. On the OTHER hand, if they set it in America instead of Japan (and using Japanese as a language), then it would suck.
On the other hand, Mel Gibson could do it - and then we'd have subtitles. =P
...and lots of gore.