Hollywood continues its reign of remakes
We live in a world of remakes – from new interpretations of classic Disney animated films such as “Cinderella” or “Beauty and the Beast” to new versions of other favorite films like “Little Women” and “A Star Is.” Born “, the offer of revamped films is endless. The almost guaranteed financial success of the remakes blinds movie studios to the real desires of critics and moviegoers.
A list of screenings in a given cinema hall will often be filled with remakes such as the most recent movie in the Marvel iteration of the Spiderman movies, “Spiderman: No Way Home” and the December 2021 version of the 1961 movie “West Side Story”. Rotten Audience Scores Tomatoes 98% for “Spiderman: No Way Home” and 94% for “West Side Story” give the impression that audiences are head over heels in love with movie remakes.
However, this sentiment does not apply to everyone. Just as product reviews don’t always reflect the true quality of an article, websites don’t always reflect the opinion of the general public, but primarily members of the public who have strong opinions about movies. . That way, the students who spoke to The News actually think the original movies are better than the remakes.
“[Original films] offer something completely new and unexpected, especially since sometimes in a remake [audiences] already know the plot, ”said Indigo Cabrol, first-year stage and media studies major.
In a study titled “Redo my day” Conducted by an online betting site called Casumo, the researchers “analyzed the Metacritic score, the audience score (based on the IMDb rating) and the profitability of movie remakes compared to the original movies.” The study found that the original films are generally preferred over their remakes, with 87% of critics and 91% of audiences expressing support for the original films.
Critics and critiques from the public reflect these findings. On Metacritic, another movie rating site, Disney’s original “Cinderella” scored 85 out of 100 and was considered a “metacritic staple”. His live-action counterpart of 2015 did not fare as well with a score of only 67. Metacritic reports much more marked differences. The original “Sleeping Beauty”, for example, got a score of 85 while its 2017 adaptation, “Maleficent”, received only 56.
For those childhood favorite films, nostalgia can play a major role in audience bad ratings as new releases fail to live up to the expectations set by the originals. On the flip side, nostalgia can also be the reason someone loves a movie remake.
“These are the ones that I end up loving the most,” Cabrol said. “I already have a basis for liking this film. I grew up and the film grew.
Capitalizing on an audience’s nostalgia can motivate movie studios to produce remakes or continuations of a beloved past series.
“Sometimes I think filmmakers may have the desire [to create] a tribute to the things that inspired them, ”says Nathan Blake, professor of media and screen studies at Northeastern.
When a nostalgic remake is done right, it has the potential to win over audiences right off the bat. On December 17th, Marvel released “Spiderman: No Way Home,” the latest installment in their Spiderman trilogy starring Tom Holland. The Marvel Trilogy Is The Third Iteration In Spiderman History In The Last Twenty Years, with a trilogy starring Tobey Maguire in the 2000s and another series starring Andrew Garfield in the early 2010s. Students who spoke to The News have expressed a preference for the more recent version of Spiderman.
“Compared to the oldies with Maguire and Garfield, I really like the new approach with Holland for a younger, more modern generation,” said Chloe Berger, a fourth year in media and stage studies.
“Spiderman: No Way Home” is currently receiving rave reviews from movie critics around the world. For example, Nicholas Barber from BBC called the movie “one of the most incredible Spider-Mans of all.
However, large amounts of remakes can set limits for film studios and filmmakers if they decide to produce an original film.
I think the biggest problem is that with the number of sequels or remakes, it limits what’s available for original content. “
– Nathan Blake
Despite its restrictive nature, there are still other motivations for movie studios to produce more remakes: monetary profit and reliability.
Take the release of the original Disney film in May 2015, “Tomorrowland”. The film made approx $ 209 million at the box office. However, the original budget was $ 190 million, meaning that Disney only made $ 19 million in profit from the film.
The film’s financial loss was offset by the release of the 2015 “Cinderella” remake two months earlier, which made $ 542 million at the box office with an initial budget of $ 95 million. This $ 442 million profit was probably enough to reassure Disney executives after the failed release of “Tomorrowland”.
“[Film studios] are very careful when they want a reliable return on their investment, ”said Blake. “There is a large studio market and a reliable profit priority. “
The inevitable success of remakes allows movie studios to take risks when producing original films. If an original film like “Tomorrowland” does poorly at the box office, the studio need not worry about financial losses as long as the profits from its other films make up for the failure of an original film.
“Business view [remakes] like something safe, ”Berger said. “Especially these days with COVID and getting people to come to the movies […] they want to make the safest bet possible.
The reign of remakes is far from over. No matter how much an original film may be acclaimed by viewers and critics alike, they lack the quality that keeps remakes going: guaranteed profit. What’s most valuable to a movie studio: hundreds of millions of dollars, or the opinion of the average moviegoer? It’s a reminder that Hollywood is an industry, and like all industries, it operates on profit. But one day, the reign of remakes could end.
“It’s something that can’t last forever,” Berger said. “Because we’re getting to the point where it’s all a remake. “