September 27th, 2010
Before I saw the link to the trailer for the remake of True Grit earlier this evening, I was only vaguely aware that a remake was in the works; I certainly hadn't paid any attention to who was involved. My mistake. The remake is written and directed by the Coen brothers and stars Jeff Bridges as 'Rooster' Cogburn, with Matt Damon and Josh Brolin co-starring in the roles originally played by Glen Campbell and Robert Duvall.
A solid cast, a nice, straightforward storyline that it would be hard to mess up and a a very decent trailer that suggests that they've stuck pretty closely to the original. It looks very much as if the Coen Brothers are about to atone for their last, woeful, attempt at a remake.
November 25th, 2009
J. Michael Straczynski has signed on to write a remake of the 1956 classic sci-fi film The Forbidden Planet. Echoing the story of The Tempest, it envisions an abandoned planet, its inhabitants far advanced beyond humanity and apparently extinguished in a single night two hundred thousand years previously. Their technology churns on without them but when a human expedition lands, it too is wiped out mysteriously, leaving only an old scientist and his daughter as survivors. The story picks up twenty years later as a second expedition arrives, and anything but hilarity ensues.
There is little early word on the project other than that Straczynski is focusing more of the plot on telling the story of the first expedition, and that Warner is hoping it turns into a franchise (because every studio wants to turn every movie into a franchise) so they're throwing a decent amount of money at the project. [...]
On the plus side, although he's worked quite a bit in comics in recent years JMS has some form when it comes to putting a good science fiction story on screen. What's more, it's been more than half a century since the original; perhaps it's time for a new generation's take on the classic story.
But then, by all accounts The Day the Earth Stood Still didn't work out well for anyone. Nor did Lost in Space. And JMS is only the writer, not the director. Not to mention the notion that the studio sees the remake as the start of a franchise.
This isn't a very good idea at all, is it? Perhaps we'd best hope that this is all a terrible misunderstanding, and that what the studios are actually planning is a big screen adaptation of Return to the Forbidden Planet.
November 28th, 2008
The BBC are bringing back The Triffids:
The year is 2011 and man has finally depleted the world's fossil fuel supply. In the hunt for alternative sources they uncover the ominous Triffid, a crop now cultivated for its fuel that seems to have a life of its own. [...]
It seems to me that this is a remake worth doing. From what little I remember of the 1981 version, John Duttine was fine in the lead role but the limitations in the special effects technology of the day meant that the triffids didn't actually move all that much or even get a great deal of screen time. Admittedly there's a danger that we'll end up knee-deep in unconvincing CGI triffids by the hundred, but it's also quite possible that the roaming plant life will seem properly scary this time round. I'd say it's a risk worth taking.
[Via Kevan Davis]
May 18th, 2008
Courtesy of a discussion at James Nicoll's LiveJournal, news on a couple of remakes of UK TV shows:
- A trailer is out for the American remake of Life on Mars. I can imagine Colm Meaney giving us a decent Americanised Gene Hunt, but who knows whether any other aspect of the show will work when transposed to the US; the trailer doesn't give many clues either way.
- Mel Gibson has reportedly signed up to star in a remake of early-80s conspiracy thriller Edge of Darkness directed by Martin Campbell, who also helmed the BBC TV version. I can see why Gibson seems like a good fit for the role of a policeman grieving over his activist daughter's death, but I wonder if they'll keep the downbeat ending.1