Since I couldn't turn up any information about the
CLASH OF THE TITANS remake I decided to re-post a little something from the pages of the old Mise-en-scene Crypt blog. Obviously I'd probably have a
slightly different line-up for the cast if put this together today, which probably wouldn't include Zach Braff since I picked him solely based on youth
and looks at the time. Anyway enjoy the article. . .
From big budget epics like Cleopatra and Jason and the Argonauts to budget conscious standards of the small screen like The Dukes of Hazzard or Battlestar Galactica remakes are staples of the movie industry. From the standpoint of the studios these are known properties with audience appeal. However familiarity also breeds contempt.
There are so many novels, myths, legends, and even real life stories out there Hollywood COULD be turning into movies (yet aren't) that it boggles the mind. Alas, instead of tackling even a fraction of this untapped reserve of stories and ideas, we are treated to an endless stream of "remakes" usually regurgitated from tired old scripts dusted off and given the "re-envisioning" treatment. I know Solomon said there's nothing new under the sun but it's something else entirely when people aren't even trying anymore!
"Warner Bros. Pictures has hired screenwriter Travis Beacham to pen a remake of the 1981 cult classic Clash of the Titans .. In 2002, Warners tapped John Glenn and Travis Adam Wright to pen the script. Beacham said he is writing a new script, and that he intends the redo to be darker and more realistic ... The storyline will still revolve around Perseus' journey to save the Princess Andromeda, during which he must complete various tasks set out by Zeus, including capturing Pegasus and slaying Medusa." (http://comingsoon.net/news/movienews.php?id=14320)
Has Hollywood given up on the elusive snark of "original" ideas or merely latched on to a "proven marketing trend", after all studios have to make money, that's life folks. But haven't they lost something by pumping yet more money into remaking old properties?
It's not as if "re-envisioning" classic horror movies and turning TV series into movies is entirely bad. On the surface this even sounds like a great idea. Problem is too many of these remakes lack the magic of the original. Take Clash of the Titans for instance. It's not a classic like Jason and the Argonauts or Lawrence of Arabia yet it's still a good movie.
But does it really need to be remade?
It's not just me wondering either --
"I have a question for all the studios in Hollywood... why remakes? Isn't there enough original material in development? Are there not enough great scripts collecting dust on your shelves? I'm pretty sure there are and all that is lacking is an executive with some "cojones" that will start being original." -Ray Harryhausen (http://www.iesb.net/warnerbros2006/050506.php)
It does seem like all Hollywood is doing these days is hiring ghost writers to dust off and re-write it's old scripts. And, from the outside looking in, it does seem odd that MUTLI-BILLION DOLLAR corporate studios seem reticent to pay a script writer to actually READ the source material and come up with an original screenplay based on first hand research. How hard can it be?
It's true Clash of the Titans was not a classic yet it wasn't a bad movie either. Sure it could have portrayed certain aspects of the myths it touched upon better. But it has a camp value that any re-make, which will likely be just another CGI loaded let down, will never be able to reproduce. So why not return to the source?
Too, what really worries me is the line about making the movie "darker and more realistic". We're talking about MYTHOLOGY here people. All you need to do is read it and follow what's in the story. Alas, being Hollywood, I fear what we'll probably get is another piece of garbage that bears no resemblance to Greco-Roman myths or legend in the vein of flicks like Minotaur.
I hope not. Alas I've been disappointed too many times to hold my breath. And then there's the question of casting. Who could play a convincing Perseus? What to do with the Greek g-ds? What should the new Kraken look like?
Of course it's easy to question. Critics do this all the time. But I really am a fan of this genre so, after a bit of thought, which lead to the creation of a mock-up poster, I have a cast. I'm still not sure who would really make a good Perseus, though I think the actor I cast at least looks the part. Too, as many will notice, I somehow managed to cast Cthulhu as the Kraken!
Hopefully the real thing will look much better. After all we aren't asking much of Travis Beacham, just that he knock our socks off! In the meantime here's my version for a laugh. . .
Zach Braff - Perseus
Catherine Bell - Adromeda
Billy Connoly - Ammon
Jamie Lee Curtis - Athena
Renee Zellweger - Aphrodite
Claudia Black - Artemis
Adrienne Barbeau - Hera
Donald Sutherland - Zeus
Zoe Wanamaker - Medusa
Jolene Blalock - Centaur*
* I don't recall a centaur in the original but decided there would be one in mine. Call it director's poetic license.
[This is an archived article. The original appeared here.]