Yesterday AMBI pictures announced it was remaking Christopher Nolan‘s classic thriller, Memento. This is unfortunate news; the current trend of remakes, reboots, and franchises appears not only financially viable for studios, but also seems able to survive alongside a creative, if underfunded, independent scene. Historically film industries around the world have alternated between the two due to more complex socio-economic and political factors, however we currently seem able to sustain the two independently.
Any day now I’m expecting to see a Transformers reboot (probably still directed by Michael Bay) showing in the same cinema as the latest Shane Carruth movie. Hearing that French company StudioCanal have plans to develop a remake of Nicolas Roeg‘s eerie, erotically charged horror, Don’t Look Now, is almost a nail in the coffin for anyone wanting original content from their big screen experience.
The original is a seminal work of the genre; a relationship drama that delves into the lives of a married couple grieving the loss of a daughter, and attempting to reconnect on a holiday in Venice. Roeg transforms the city’s quiet streets into a shifting existential labyrinth, with stars Julie Christie and Donald Sutherland caught in something neither can understand.
There’s an emotional honesty about the film that defies the conventions of the genre, and helps keep the piece together through the twists and turns, right up until the devastating end. Released as the sister film to British horror masterpiece, The Wickerman, Don’t Look Now is in no need of a reboot.
Donald Sutherland seems to agree; speaking with the Metro in the run up to the release of his latest film, The Hunger Games: Mocking Jay – Part 2, he stated: “Don’t embarrass yourselves by making it. Don’t embarrass yourselves by participating in it. It’s bullshit“. Continuing, the eighty year old actor said, “Why do they do it? It’s just people wanting profit, trying to profit off the back of Nicolas Roeg, and something that’s very beautiful. It’s shameful. They should be ashamed of themselves“.
Hopefully someone will come to there senses and call the whole thing off before it reaches production, as of yet the project has no writers or director attached so we still have time. Unfortunately, while remakes and reboots still remain profitable for major studios, expect to see many more of your favourite films receive the same treatment from those wanting to profit from other’s creativity.