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Steven Spielberg to remake The Grapes of Wrath

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>can't find a reason why we would have to limit ourselves to one version and that is it. We wouldn't have the 1959 Ben Hur or the 1939 Hunchback of Notre Dame if that were the case.

 

We don't have to limit ourselves to just one version. :) Nor do we have to limit ourselves to not expressing an opinion about re-makes in general. :)

 

Personally, I prefer the 1925 Ben Hur, and the 1939 Hunchback of Notre Dame.

 

IMDB says that Clementine was made 4 times:

 

Frontier Marshal (1934)

Frontier Marshal (1939)

MY DARLING CLEMENTINE (1946)

Powder River (1953)

 

A few days ago I saw THE JACKALS (1967), which is a re-make of YELLOW SKY (1948), and, actually, I don't like either one.

 

IMDB says that those two films and the following ones were based on Shakespeare's THE TEMPEST:

 

The Tempest (1908) (Short)

The Tempest (1911) (Short)

The Tempest (1939) (TV Movie)

Forbidden Planet (1956)

BBC Sunday-Night Theatre: The Tempest (1956) (TV Episode)

The Tempest (1960) (TV Movie)

BBC Play of the Month: The Tempest (1968) (TV Episode)

The Tempest (1979)

The Tempest (1980) (Video)

The Tempest (1980) (TV Movie)

Tempest (1982)

The Tempest (1983) (Video)

The Tempest (1986) (Video)

Resan till Melonia (1989)

Prospero's Books (1991)

Shakespeare: The Animated Tales: The Tempest (1992) (TV Episode)

Stormen (1998) (TV Movie)

The Tempest (1998) (TV Movie)

The Tempest (2010)

The Tempest (2010)

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Count me as one who'd be looking forward to a remake. Of course about 95% of the films attempting to depict the past inevitably blow it ( the nadir being reached in Mississippi Burning ), but at the very worst it'll be worth seeing 50 years down the road as an example of how early 21st century Hollywood viewed the Okie migration.

 

And who knows (sacrilege alert), it might even be an improvement over the original, which IMO is a bit overrated to begin with. If nothing else, a non-Breen version might even give us an idea of what some of the language back then was really like, which if done naturally and not forced would add a bit of realism to the story.

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Most remakes may not be up to the original, but there are certainly some notable exceptions. Much as I love the Constance Bennett and Jaynet Gaynor versions of A Star Is Born, I'm certainly glad that they let Judy Garland give the performance of her life in topping both of them. It *can* be done. B-)

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I could not give a hoot about Grapes of Wrath. But please leave Gone with the Wind alone.

 

In these politically correct times it would be mangled and butchered to make it palatable to

the modern audience.

 

Jake in the Heartland

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Hi Andy,

 

Here's a serious question that I just recently thought about, regarding today's movie makers, and a re-make of this film.

 

What would you do about the demographics of the cast of a new version of this film, considering the demographics to today's audiences, now that about 40% of the US population is non-Anglo, and now that nearly all of today's migrant workers are Hispanic and have been for about the past 50 years?

 

I think all of Tom Joad's folks and friends were Anglo. So were the bankers, the California farm owners, the store owners along the way, the police, and the vigilantes.

 

US demographics today:

 

15% Hispanic

13% Black

5.6% Asian

2.5% Jewish

1.4% Arabic

5% Other

 

42.5% Estimated Total

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Fred,

 

Good question. But since depicting historical reality as accurately as possible means more to me than maximizing box office returns, I'd stick to the demographics described by Steinbeck that were reflective of that reality.

 

The westward trek in The Grapes of Wrath was an Okie migration. No escaping that. I'd *also* love to see Spielberg try to make *another* movie along the lines of El Norte, and perhaps to make yet another one (hey, it's not my money!) on the Great Migration of African Americans to the North in the aftermath of the first World War. But those would be different movies about different migrations. The one Steinbeck wrote about was about the Dust Bowl migration of the Okies, not the northward migrations of Mexicans or African Americans, and I'd hope this would be how he'd portray it.

 

And yes, since the rest of the groups depicted were also likely to have been Anglos, the movie should reflect that reality as well. My personal bottom line is that truth is usually much more interesting than focus-group driven fiction.

 

Hope that answers your question, if not the question of the marketers. :)

 

 

 

 

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Thanks for your thoughtful reply. I think I agree with you.

 

I haven't seen El Norte, but I would like to see it. I saw The Milagro Beanfield War, and I liked it a lot. I'd like to see it again. It is a fairly accurate depiction of water wars here in New Mexico.

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Yes, a remake of Gone With The Wind done today might reflect the actual reality of slavery in the south. We cannot have that since it might offend some people in the south. The PC crowd already has Roots.

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1) I think its odd to be so against a remade film that hasn't been made yet. You haven't seen it so how can you know how it is ?

 

2) You all forget, this was during the period of the code. There are probably details that didn't make it to the film. For example, that's why The Big Sleep (1946) is a better film but, so confusing and the (1978) version so much easier to understand.

 

3) Should we all just never watch An Affair to Remember or Maltese Falcon because they were made many times ? Imitation of Life was the very first classic film I watched as a kid, it was a remake and it was still good and changed my life.

 

The film industry has been remaking films since it has existed. How many versions of Maltese Falcon were shown on the same day just a week ago ?? Anything that results in possibly a good film, I'm for it. Maybe kids will watch it and learn what good movies look like ?

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> {quote:title=jamesjazzguitar wrote:}{quote}Yes, a remake of Gone With The Wind done today might reflect the actual reality of slavery in the south. We cannot have that since it might offend some people in the south. The PC crowd already has Roots.

Hi James,

 

Two books that might give you more insight:

 

Jeffrey Rogers Hummel, Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men

 

Robert W. Fogel and Stanley Engermann, Time on the Cross

 

Jake in the Heartland

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I agree with Geralddddd. Although the 1940 version was very well done and a classic (Henry Fonda got robbed of that Oscar!), I'm willing to give Spielberg the benefit of the doubt. There's more to him than fantasy movies like E.T....and he was not involved in that messy remake of The Women.

 

Most notably, the ending of the book had to be changed for the 1940 film because it would never make it past the censors.

 

As for casting, I have this vision of Eli Wallach (who is very, very old now, so unlikely) as Grandpa Joad and Tyne Daly playing Ma Joad (does anyone know if her given name was ever used in the book?)...

 

BLU

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>I think its odd to be so against a remade film that hasn't been made yet. You haven't seen it so how can you know how it is ?

 

Well, it would be like someone saying CITIZEN KANE is going to be re-made.

 

How can anyone re-make CITIZEN KANE without re-making it scene for scene, word for word, with lighting and shadow the same, and with the same actors, and in 4:3 and B&W?

 

It would be like saying someone will do a new painting of the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.

 

I just can't imagine a wide-screen and color version of THE GRAPES OF WRATH.

 

But I will admit that when I first heard about Spielberg's Schindler's List being made, I didn't think I would like it. I thought it would be in color. But he made it in B&W with good old-style lighting, and his use of wide screen was fine, and it was a great film. :)

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Its not as if its going to *replace* the old classic. You don't have to watch the new one. There have been many remakes that fell by the wayside and were forgotten.

 

Frankly I am with the Siskel and Ebert thought of : If you're going to remake a movie, why a classic ? Remake some of those films that should have been good and just didn't work out. That I would appreciate.

 

I'm sure some of you can think of movies that didn't meet expectations....but, that's for another thread. :)

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>Frankly I am with the Siskel and Ebert thought of : If you're going to remake a movie, why a classic ? Remake some of those films that should have been good and just didn't work out. That I would appreciate

 

I agree with that. There were plenty of old famous films that just weren't very good, and I would like to see Speilberg try to re-make them in a better way.

 

But to re-make a classic film, is, to me, like someone saying he is going to re-paint all the known Vermeer paintings. They are already perfect Vermeer paintings, so why re-paint them?

 

I don't see THE GRAPES OF WRATH as being "a film version of Steinbeck's book". I see it as a stand-alone artistic film about the Joad family. I generally don't read novels, but I do watch many films.

 

If someone says they are going to remake THE GRAPES OF WRATH film, I think they are going to try to re-make the FILM. If they are going to make it different, then they should say they are going to make their own version of a film based on THE GRAPES OF WRATH _NOVEL_. That would be different. Let them go ahead and do it. I might watch it.

 

I don't care if they film their own version of the original novel. But to try to make a re-make of the film, without Henry Fonda and the other original cast, then that is silly.

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Or find another novel about the dust bowl, I'm sure there are plenty to choose from.

 

To me it just gives the idea that there are a finite number of good films and I don't agree with that at all. There are foreign films that can be adapted for example. There's lots of sources for good ideas. And no matter how good it might be, it will always pale next to the classic.

 

I think he should make whatever films he wants. I just think there are better "classic" films he could make that could stand on their own.

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>I'm sure some of you can think of movies that didn't meet expectations....

 

Yeah, Tortilla Flat

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>To me it just gives the idea that there are a finite number of good films and I don't agree with that at all. There are foreign films that can be adapted for example.

 

My position is that there are hundreds of French, German, Italian, Japanese, and other films that were made in the past and that were classics but that have never been shown in the US and most do not have English subtitles. Let's see those before we start "re-making" them.

 

I want to see the original Bittler Rice, not a color wide-screen re-make of it. I want to see the original La Dolce Vita, not a new Americanized re-make of it.

 

I want to see the original German 1943 version of Titanic, not an imitation modern re-make of it. This film can NOT be re-made. It is a unique stand-alone film that can not be re-made or duplicated today.

 

It's like the modern "The Women" film. We heard more about it before it was made than after it was made. It came and went in one week and its gone, but the original lives on.

 

I just thought of a re-make that I like better than the original, and that is CAPE FEAR.

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It would be like saying someone will do a new painting of the Sistine Chapel.

 

....or a Picasso! That is the best comparison as well, everyone seems to forget that the lighting cannot be duplicated which adds so much to the B & W Classic Movies.

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>Most notably, the ending of the book had to be changed for the 1940 film because it would never make it past the censors.

 

And one of THE most salient points brought into the conversation here!

 

Ya see all you "naysayers" out there(and you know who you are!), I would venture to guess Spielberg has THIS very point in mind, also! Yep, I very much doubt Spielberg has in mind to do a scene-for-scene remake of Ford's great film!!!!

 

(...and so THANK YOU bundie for apparently gettin' at least ONE of those "naysayers", and once again you know who you are out there, to FINALLY "grasp this concept" and relent on their initial abject disapproval of this whole idea...well done, bundie, WELL DONE!!!)

 

**** HERE!!!

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And Twink, I will once again press the point that this is an "outdoor yarn", which presents the story of a down-an-out family traversing this big beautiful country of ours.(okay, mine, as you're a Canadian...but I'm sure you know what I mean here)

 

And thus, the argument that would state this story must be filmed in B&W(let alone in the aspect ratio of 4:3) in order to somehow give the feeling of "desperation" the story is attempting to press, would not be a valid argument in totality because of the idea and concept that to present it in color COULD be a way of expressing the "contrasts" inherent in the Joad's hardscrabble existence and the potential for eventual abundance which the Joad's seek in their travels.

 

(...and once again, I'll ALSO press the point that this story is NOT a Film-Noir, which as you know are located almost solely in large and 'claustrophobic" cities)

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Dargou, .....you're pulling on my heartstrings :| , I don't mean that to be rude, I'm serious.

 

Twink

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well if Spielberg wants to honor TGOW, the best thing he could do imho is to fund a restoration of this classic, then use his clout to have it released as widely as possi ble. this will call attention to the movie and book, in the best possible way. his name will have younger viewers being a little less resishtant to the type of movies that are thee brenad and butter of TCM. A win win situation .

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Oh, blah, blah, blah!

 

 

The trouble with film lovers AND film makers is they approach all this from the wrong perspective. Don't like the idea of remaking a "classic". "No, thanks. I'll stick to the ORIGINAL".

 

 

Yeah, so what would the world be like if we thought of ALL entertainment in this fashion.

 

 

"Hey, Sid! Somebody's gonna restage HAMLET."

 

 

"Really? Man, I HATE it when they mess around with the classics. I'd rather see the ORIGINAL!"

 

 

Yeah, good LUCK with that.

 

 

Most of y'all have already panned this movie, and it HASN'T BEEN MADE YET!

 

 

I know, given the history of failed remakes, your early call might be accurate. But then again, it just might surprise you. Why not WAIT until THEN?

 

 

Sepiatone

 

 

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well that is a specious argument. Hamlet and other stage plays are supposed to be seen on stages everywhere live, and even if there is a filmed/taped version of a given production, that is available to almost nobody. A movie, on the other hand, is released and made available to the widest possible audience. So a much greater amount of people have seen and can continue to see, said movie. So I dont understand this need to remake, update, "perfect", a given piece of artisanry/artistry, when what is available is perfectly viable, and no vanity project will ever convince me of it being sound, unless.ones catering.to ones.vanity to try to outdo a classic is a sound notion.

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