The culture of remakes in Hollywood

Rami Chaudhry, Staff Writer

Profitable remakes of aging franchises and young adult novel adaptations continue to flood theaters.  The lack of original content in the movie industry is alarming.

Film franchises now feel the need to split their final installments into two parts.  The latter of which is often in nausea-inducing, pocket draining 3D.  This is the formula, and we are unfortunately forced to study it.

Hollywood implements this recipe for a number of reasons.  Firstly, it provides an amount of stability for their films.  As long as the movie has a wide enough fan base and an easily recognizable household name, the money will come piling in.  So long as film producers are reading their complaints atop golden thrones, they will never stop to even consider revising their lack of originality.

We as consumers take comfort in being familiar with a film before investing in movie tickets.  Toss in a splashy CGI-infused teaser trailer during the Super Bowl and a 3D logo on the movie poster, and a studio, as if by magic, has a lucrative summer blockbuster.

This highly evident trend has especially plagued the superhero genre recently, as Marvel and DC have been releasing sequels and announcing reboots annually.

Remember the Spider-Man franchise?  No, not the Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone one that came out in 2012—the Spider-Man trilogy that began in 2002 starring Toby McGuire.  It’s safe to say that the latter brought Spider-Man’s origin story to the masses.

The story was solid, and the movie was well made, enjoyable, and memorable.  It became a sort of modern superhero classic and the benchmark for future superhero films.  Why then, did Sony release a new Spider-Man movie just five years after the release of the last Spider-Man film?  Did they run out of ideas?  Of course not.

Sony wanted to make money easily and solidify their “new” franchise for inevitable sequels (which they have successfully accomplished, given that the newly released Amazing Spider-Man 2 garnered $91,608,337 opening weekend.)

This kind of factorized process in making movies is a detriment to the creative process and only effective at making money, yet it shows no sign of slowing down.  There has been an abundance of announcements for new film remakes and sequels such as Godzilla, Fantastic Four, Scarface, and Star Wars.

No matter how repetitive these movies are, millions of viewers will certainly go out and see them.  These movies will continue to grasp the average moviegoer’s minds and wallets. Thus, studios will continue to make substantial profits.  The question is, will it start to fail them?  The formula is starting to show its age and abuse in the movie industry, but just like Spider-Man, it looks as if we will have to wait around a little longer for the end of it.