Im4movies2

Remakes of Musicals in general

114 posts in this topic

Of course, they are doing THE SOUND OF MUSIC, in the fall of this year. However, it isn't a remake. It will be a live production of, I believe, the stage show; but, because it is live television, it will be neither the stage show or the movie. It will be a hybrid of both, I would expect, done in a studio, with various sets, like the days of live teleplays. It will have the look of a daytime soap. With the casting of Carrie Underwood, I would rather they were doing ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, but, whatever, I'll be watching, though not expecting much. It certainly isn't possible for them to better the 1965 film, which is among a very rare breed of film. It is perfect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well one way to help us measure if the current talent is up to that of the 'old days' is by viewing a remake. Also, a remake brings attention to the original. I just don't understand why so many classic movie fans feel remakes somehow harm the original.

 

Anytime there is a remake the talking heads on T.V. entertainment shows ALSO discuss the original. Often this is the only exposure the original gets on mainstream T.V. There is no evidence to support the POV that remakes limit the access to the original e.g. make it harder to get a DVD of the original.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That is my point, in general no one knows how to make a musical anymore.......a better chance to see something good would be found in Broadway (even dinner theaters ha !) Yet , unlike the movies that came to be after a good run on Broadway , where is one? I do not remember a musical being made after seen on Broadway.

Directors?? the costumes? No attempts , or serious ones. There are some good shows on Broadway, the Producers (JMO) went to long and was not good enough to then become a movie , what is needed is someone willing to take a chance and a few actors who are willing to forgo a 30 to 50 million paycheck......It is called integrity. There are plenty of books ready to be made into a musical .Also there are some good musical remakes, all it takes is a fresh new look and leave the premise of the story in place. I honestly think we need something new, the Sci FYI.....has more than run its course, scary movies? really? they have had to resort to a twist at the end, trying to make it humorous ...thus the Scary Movie is gone, beaten up. My second favorite Suspense, they seem to have forgotten how to make these also. If you cannot keep me on the edge of my seat please do not bother me.

A good musical keeps you spellbound , on the edge of your seat and in wonder how someone could actually dance! Many were written , a good director is needed....recent failures is because the Musical is just plain old dusty..........now get some good talent and put one together.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree, you can not replace the great voice of Gordon MacRae, his range was amazing. There is no one who came, or comes close to the emotion he could convey, with just a simple change in pitch like Gordon MacRae. Remaking this great musical would be a mistake, let it stand on it's own.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How does an original not 'stand on its own' if there is a remake?

 

In fact a remake brings attention to the original. If we want more people to appreciate the talents of MacRae, a remake helps this cause.

 

The original doesn't lose value because of a remake. In fact it gains more value.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I totally agree, MacRae's voice was the best, not one can compare, or even come close. Gordon MacRae was amazing!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, how does a remake prevent the original from 'standing on it's own'. I already stated multiple times that I rarely find a remake better than the original. So what.

 

A remake being attention to the original. I have often had discussions with people that have only seen the remake. When they hear there is an earlier version they often seek that out. They wouldn't of been interested in the original if it wasn't for the remake.

 

So I really don't see what there is to disagree with; Again, tell me what harm a remake does to the original? NONE! (except when the producers of the remake legally prevent access to the original by buying the rights to the original).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A big problem with remakes is that tastes in popular music evolve and change. The score to an older musical can be tweaked to somewhat reflect the changes, but it often seems forced. I don't mean that the words and music can't be appreciated still, but that they don't always make as much sense if the setting is updated. Classic musicals pretty much need to be done as period pieces or not at all. Something like "State Fair" could theoretically still be done since we still have state fairs, but would a modern audience really be roused by Darren Criss and Taylor Swift singing "It's a Grand Night For Singing" if it were done in a twenty-first century setting? I agree with you that a remake doesn't necessarily detract from the original, but I think it could also prevent people from bothering to check out the original if the remake was so unsatisfactory. Most, though not all, of the musicals mentioned have been remakes themselves in a sense, having been translated from stage to screen. Maybe the best place for a reamke of any of them is back on the stage, where doing thing in period seems to be more the standard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

With regards to "I think it could also prevent people from bothering to check out the original if the remake was so unsatisfactory";

 

Well I guess that could go either way; Someone might be more interested in the original if they are told by someone how much better the original was, but if they felt the basic plot (story), was weak then I could see them not wishing to check out the original.

 

But other reason for a remake would be to feature actresses that actually do the singing. e.g. No Rita or Audrey, need apply!

 

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're right about that. So many talented people had non-careers because the studios only wanted their voices and nothing else. In "Singin' In The Rain", Debbie Reynolds' character eventually became a star after having only been a voice, but I doubt that happened in real life. As far as whether or not people would bother to check out an original if the remake were poor, I guess I was playing devil's advocate. I myself like to see every version of a film I like if I can track them down and I bet you're that way too, but so many people are turned off by anything "old" or black-and-white or Academy-ratio. Their loss, right?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well most of the time I have seen the original before the remake but sometimes there is a really old original, e.g. The Maltese Falcon, where I saw the 41 remake before the 31 original.

 

But yea, if I like the story I like to see what another group of people do with the same source material.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I totally disagree, let the original Musicals stand on their own, besides the remakes are rarely better.

 

You're spot-on with this, sdgarcia!  A musical, especially one such as West Side Story, stands as is, is what it is, and, as you've pointed out, musical re-makes are very seldom better in the end.  Hollywood is doing lots of re-makes and sequels to  movies, because they've clearly run out of creative ideas.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a long time they have threatened to remake "West Side Story" but with out the original songs?!! I imagine as long as Arthur Laurents is alive this will not happen.

 

Arthur Laurents is now dead!  Hopefully this will not happen, at all, because a re-make of the film West Side Story would be an utter fiasco--it would just cut the heart and soul right out of it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Would you like to give specifics of the "technical advances" which would improve upon existing musicals? The most recent musicals utilize the annoyingly excessive quick cuts, for their musical numbers. Films now look like MTV videos, where someone with zero ability to dance, can be made to look like they are doing something. Not such an advancement to my way of thinking. Not to say that I don't feel some musicals should be remade, but not for the reasons you state.

 

Your points make great, good sense, johnm001.   In the past, there were people who really knew how to dance and act that really were in musicals, but nowadays, there's so much corporate-oriented tin-can talent (if one can call it "talent" with a straight face!), so long on style (if one can call it that!), and so woefully short on substance that re-makes would not go over very well, at all.

 

The best way to introduce famous classic movie-musicals to today's younger generations is to get the original movies such as West Side Story, Sound of Music, etc., back into the theatres.  Wouldn't that be a fabulous way to unite generations together?!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Of course, they are doing THE SOUND OF MUSIC, in the fall of this year. However, it isn't a remake. It will be a live production of, I believe, the stage show; but, because it is live television, it will be neither the stage show or the movie. It will be a hybrid of both, I would expect, done in a studio, with various sets, like the days of live teleplays. It will have the look of a daytime soap. With the casting of Carrie Underwood, I would rather they were doing ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, but, whatever, I'll be watching, though not expecting much. It certainly isn't possible for them to better the 1965 film, which is among a very rare breed of film. It is perfect.

 

 

Again, you're right on target, johnm001.  Re-creating a given musical like Sound of Music, West Side Story, or even My Fair Lady on stage is one thing, but  these movies cannot be re-made, at least not without disastrous results, especially since re-makes of Planet of the Apes and Hitchcock's Psycho are strong indications of that, since both of the latter re-makes went over like lead balloons--inotherwords, not well. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

it's interesting how they are making musicals based on non-musical cult movies....Little Shop of Horrors, Hairspray, the Producers, etc, etc,,..but I have to ask if it is really necessary to do a musical remake of Footloose??

 

 

The Graduate was another dreadful example of making musicals based on non-musical cults.  I read some reviews, and decided to pass.  Hollywood has run out of creative ideas, which is why there are so many re-makes these days.  They should leave well enough alone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll make a shocking statement and say that some of our long beloved musical films should be remade. Yes why not apply new technical advances and newer approaches with new young talent to redo some classics like: Singing In The Rain and even The Sound of Music. Although pretty perfect as they are now the way they were originally made come on now, it's been over fifty or sixty years and there isn't a fresh approach?

 

Edited by: Im4movies2 on May 16, 2010 11:28 PM

 

I have to disagree here, Im4movies2.  I don't know about Singing' in the Rain, since I've never seen that one, but Sound of Music and West Side Story are  movie/musicals that are classics which are what they are and should definitely be left alone.  The best way to introduce those two films to younger generations would be to re-introduce them back into the movie theatres, not to re-make them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have to disagree here, Im4movies2.  I don't know about Singing' in the Rain, since I've never seen that one, but Sound of Music and West Side Story are  movie/musicals that are classics which are what they are and should definitely be left alone.  The best way to introduce those two films to younger generations would be to re-introduce them back into the movie theatres, not to re-make them.

 

Definitely be left alone????     How does a remake harm a film?   It does NOT.

 

Sorry but younger generations are NOT interested in 'old' movies.     Introducing old films back into movie theaters would be a financial disaster.     

 

Data on leasing of films tells the real story;   E.g. The Magnificent Seven remake that was just released.    Rental of the 60s version are increasing.   Same was true for True Grit etc........

 

Remakes being attention to prior versions and if anything honor prior versions instead of harming them.

 

PS:   99% of the time I prefer the original over a remake (exceptions being the Huston version of The Maltese Falcon).       

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely be left alone????     How does a remake harm a film?   It does NOT.

 

Sorry but younger generations are NOT interested in 'old' movies.     Introducing old films back into movie theaters would be a financial disaster.     

 

Data on leasing of films tells the real story;   E.g. The Magnificent Seven remake that was just released.    Rental of the 60s version are increasing.   Same was true for True Grit etc........

 

Remakes being attention to prior versions and if anything honor prior versions instead of harming them.

 

PS:   99% of the time I prefer the original over a remake (exceptions being the Huston version of The Maltese Falcon).       

 

Again, I disagree.  Even though my generation wasn't especially interested in the majority of the movies that were popular during my parents' generation, our generation didn't demand to have them re-made to fit our interests.  The newer generation shouldn't demand that older movies be re-made to cater to their tastes, whims, mores and preferences, either.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Definitely be left alone????     How does a remake harm a film?   It does NOT.

 

Sorry but younger generations are NOT interested in 'old' movies.     Introducing old films back into movie theaters would be a financial disaster.     

 

Data on leasing of films tells the real story;   E.g. The Magnificent Seven remake that was just released.    Rental of the 60s version are increasing.   Same was true for True Grit etc........

 

Remakes being attention to prior versions and if anything honor prior versions instead of harming them.

 

PS:   99% of the time I prefer the original over a remake (exceptions being the Huston version of The Maltese Falcon).       

 

So...Do you think that the re-making of movies such as West Side Story and the Sound of Music would increase the popularity of the original films?  Just curious.   

 

There were re-makes of Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho and The Planet of the Apes (the latter of which was not made by Alfred Hitchcock), both of which went over like lead balloons...inotherwords, not at all well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, how does a remake prevent the original from 'standing on it's own'. I already stated multiple times that I rarely find a remake better than the original. So what.

 

A remake being attention to the original. I have often had discussions with people that have only seen the remake. When they hear there is an earlier version they often seek that out. They wouldn't of been interested in the original if it wasn't for the remake.

 

So I really don't see what there is to disagree with; Again, tell me what harm a remake does to the original? NONE! (except when the producers of the remake legally prevent access to the original by buying the rights to the original).

 

Steve Spielberg bought the rights to the 1961 film of West Side Story, so that he could do a re-make of it.  Since he bought the rights of that film from Fox, I have a hunch that nobody else would be able to have access to the original film of West Side Story afterwards.  We'd all be sunk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're right about that. So many talented people had non-careers because the studios only wanted their voices and nothing else. In "Singin' In The Rain", Debbie Reynolds' character eventually became a star after having only been a voice, but I doubt that happened in real life. As far as whether or not people would bother to check out an original if the remake were poor, I guess I was playing devil's advocate. I myself like to see every version of a film I like if I can track them down and I bet you're that way too, but so many people are turned off by anything "old" or black-and-white or Academy-ratio. Their loss, right?

 

Debbie Reynolds played in the film  "The Unsinkable Molly Brown".  She was quite good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Again, I disagree.  Even though my generation wasn't especially interested in the majority of the movies that were popular during my parents' generation, our generation didn't demand to have them re-made to fit our interests.  The newer generation shouldn't demand that older movies be re-made to cater to their tastes, whims, mores and preferences, either.  

 

I wonder if you understand US movie history as it relates to remakes;  remakes have been made since the 20s;  E.g. many silent films were remade as talkies.   This is similar to remaking a film with CGI effects in that advanced technology is a primary reason for a remake.      In addition when the production code was lifted (or less enforced) a remake can be more true to the original source material;  e.g.   The play The Children Hour was released in the 30s as These Three without a lesbian and the remake in the 60s was much more closer to the play.   Note that Wyler directed both versions.    To me this is telling;  He felt the story was sound and wanted to remake the picture in an era where the actual story could be told.      

 

Remakes clearly bring attention to prior versions;  Yea, those 'new' Planet of the Ape films didn't do so well but the rentals of the original films increased.     So yea,  I do believe a remake of West Side Story or Sound of Music would bring interest for these great films to younger viewers that are unaware of them.   

 

I do agree that the one area where a remake can cause harm is when producers purchase the rights to the original version and suppress access to the original (e.g. don't lease it to stations like TCM,  don't offer the film on DVD etc...).      This occurred with the Alan Ladd version of The Great Gatsby.      Obviously I strongly object to this practice since one of my missions in life is to expose people (such as my nephews) to all the great films,  like West Side Story,  that were made during the studio-era. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Remakes clearly bring attention to prior versions;  Yea, those 'new' Planet of the Ape films didn't do so well but the rentals of the original films increased.     

 

The 2001 Tim Burton Planet of the Apes was a horrible movie with some amazing special effects that made over $360 million on a $100 million budget. So it made a ton of money.

 

The newest Apes films, Rise of the Planet of the Apes in 2011 ($93m budget/$481 million BO) and the sequel Dawn of the Planet of the Apes in 2014 ($170m budget/$710m BO), were both critical and commercial hits (and I liked them a lot, too. Rise was on my top ten of the year list). I'm looking forward to the forthcoming War of the Planet of the Apes next year.

 

So these did, in fact, do well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

New Members:

Register Here

Learn more about the new message boards:

FAQ

Having problems?

Contact Us