Everything Old Is New Again?
We are starting to see a trend of things from our past being updated, repackaged and shown for a new generation. The big screen has seen recently Footloose redone, The Thing redone yet again, the buzz around 21 Jump Street coming to the big screen in 2012, and now it has been announced The Fall Guy is getting the resurrection treatment.Surprised? Maybe you shouldn’t knowing what has been happening in Hollywood. Think last summer when The A-Team was given the big screen treatment. The cost of the film was around $110 million, which they made in foreign release alone, then add almost $80 million domestically and you have a formula for success.
Here’s the breakdown: film companies are in the business of making money, are seemingly less likely to take a chance on an original idea (which seem to be fleeting – who is to blame for that?), so they are going to ideas that bring us back to a time when the country was prosperous (the 80’s), when network TV carried more weight than it does in the wake of cable original programming, and that audience who watched these show are old enough to remember, spend some money and escape from the current state of affairs around them. This is all just a theory, but think about it ………..
The Fall Guy may not be as far fetched since Ryan Gosling recently starred in Drive – playing a Hollywood stuntman moonlighting as a wheelman. This is somewhat similar to what Lee Majors played as Colt Seavers for 5 seasons on the former ABC series. Just like that, the door is open more for a resurrection!
21 Jump Street fits the theory as well – 5 seasons on FOX in the late 80s, major cult following, lends itself to big screen treatment, and it does not hurt that the star of this reboot was a major fan of the original (Jonah Hill). Having Johnny Depp come from that show to major stardom does not hurt its chances for success in 2012 either.
But wait ……………. there’s more!
Film maker Jason Richman (Bangkok Dangerous) is working on a script for MacGyver to return. The public did not go for the spoof of the old ABC show in MacGruber – the SNL parody into a film bombed (grossing under $10 million).
Russell Crowe has attached himself to a remake of the 80s CBS hit The Equalizer. Only on for 4 seasons in the mid-80’s, the show won Edward Woodward acclaim with a Golden Globe and 4 Emmy nominations for each season he starred. Crowe should be perfect for this role (due out in 2013).
Let’s not forget that The Dukes of Hazzard, Miami Vice, and The Incredible Hulk (early 80s) have had the redeux treatment. Do you see the pattern a little more? Not every experiment has succeeded, but the gamble on a old product that had a large following in the past is not as risky as a fresh idea.
So what is next? I’m betting on Airwolf, The Greatest American Hero, and T.J. Hooker (so long as Shatner is being Hooker).