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Universal is Remake-Happy: "Bride of Frankenstein" Up Next

Author
Date
06-17-2009
Comments
Elsa Lanchester as The Bride

The Hollywood Reporter's Risky Business blog broke the inevitable news that Universal is developing a remake of James Whales's Bride of Frankenstein. In fact, it turns out that Universal's been kicking around the idea for at least five years, although never with any success. The new Bride would be co-produced with Imagine Entertainment. Neil Burger (The Illusionist, The Lucky Ones) is in talks to write and direct; he would likely partner with Dirk Wittenborn on the screenplay.

Personally, I'm ambivalent. While I don't want to fall into the trap of dismissing an entire studio for decisions made by different executives for different reasons, but let's look at the facts here. The last two pieces of horror news to come out of Universal were "Hey, we're remaking Videodrome as an action-thriller," and "Oh, by the way, we're doing a contemporary update of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with Keanu Reeves." The news about Bride is only slightly more hopeful, because there's no casting attached and the rather questionable concept that the Risky Business blog does mention -- a modernization set in New York City -- is actually one of the discarded ideas from five years. Whatever the new take on Bride of Frankenstein is, it could be very good indeed.

But I'm not putting any money on that horse.

Ugh... while I don't

Ugh... while I don't automatically think ANY remake is a bad thing, some films (this, Casablanca, Citizen Kane, 2001, The Godfather) should never be remade.

To awaken thrilling horror!

I agree with Eric.  My

I agree with Eric.  My favorite horror movie of all-time is Dawn of the Dead '78, and its remake was, surprisingly enough, the best remake made thus far.  But Bride has no business being in the discussion.  It may seem dated and ripe for the picking, but not only is it a product of its time and place (something that can never be recaptured), but it's also still one of the the five greatest horror films of all-time.

And I know, I know... The Bride was made in 1985.  Let's see a show of hands at how many of you think that decroded piece of crap counts as anything but a stupid, horrible movie?

I never really saw The Bride

I never really saw The Bride as being a remake of The Bride of Frankenstein (legally, it really couldn't be, since it was made at Columbia), but an extrapolation of the section in Shelley's book dealing with the female monster.

I haven't seen it in about sixteen or seventeen years and I couldn't really tell you anything about it. I do have it on DVD, so maybe it's time to give it another watch.

"He went for a little walk! You should have seen his face!"

Well, I wouldn't consider it

Well, I wouldn't consider it a remake, but if I wasn't going to consider it one, I really wouldn't be able to call any of the thousands of other Frankenstein movies remakes, either.  "Reimagining" would be a more appropriate word for them all, I guess.

Universal's original Dracula

Universal's original Dracula and Frankenstein weren't based on the books at all, but popular stage versions that significantly altered the stories. The only remakes, then, would be films also based on the same stage versions. Frank Langella's Dracula is a remake, then, but I'm hard-pressed to think of another.

"He went for a little walk! You should have seen his face!"

They should leave well enough

They should leave well enough alone. This film is a real classic as it is. I would still go see the remake and hopefully not feel  like when I saw the different King Kong versions. They should cast Jocelyne Windelstein or Joan Rivers as the bride. At least we'd really get a good scare and it wouldn't be phoney.

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