Sunday, July 10, 2016


It's now all the rage!

... Counting this year’s successes — Paramount’s “10 Cloverfield Lane,” Universal’s Melissa McCarthy comedy “The Boss” and Warner Bros.’ “Central Intelligence,” which all made it into the top 20 of 2016 so far — fresh intellectual property is decidedly hoisting up this year’s box office.

20th Century Fox-Marvel’s “Deadpool” can also be counted since it is the first film based on the motor-mouthed comic book character after which the movie is named. And it’s the third highest-grossing movie of the year to date, behind “Finding Dory” and “Captain America: Civil War.”

“New ideas help grow the business,” said producer Brad Fuller, whose most recent release is the scary movie sequel “The Purge: Election Year.”

Another indicator Hollywood has found newfound confidence in fresh ideas is Pixar’s recent announcement that it has no more sequels slated after “The Incredibles II” in 2019. ...

These things go in cycles. When remakes are big (Cinderella, Jungle Book) they make the same pictures over again.

When sequels are the order of the day, well whattayaknow! Let's make sequels! (All with the same magic story beats as the originals).

But none of this is new. Hollywood made the equivalent of sequels and remakes in the twenties, thirties and beyond.

Charlie Chaplin pictures.

Harold Lloyd pictures.

Doug Fairbanks or Clark Gable of Tyrone Power films. Stars had features tailored to their screen personalities, most with similar story arcs.

So sure, they were not (technically speaking) remakes or sequels of earlier successes, but they were pretty close to the type of movie products we see and love today. When filmmakers find themselves a winning template, they tend to replicate it. And as more than one critic has noted The Private Lives of Pets borrows lots of its narrative building blocks from Toy Story.

In the end, there is little that is fresh and new under the sun.


Matthew Koh said...

Steve, I think you watch this video to get the idea of why studios are producing remakes and sequels.

Chris Sobieniak said...

Well that explains it, thanks Matt! No wonder Episode 7 worked.

Steve Hulett said...

The video is nice, but it understates how sequels make lots and lots of money. (Usually).

Steve Hulett said...

But ... always on the lookout for blog fodder, I'll put it up.

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