Planet of the Apes restart causes star backlash?
It's interesting that when we think of Hollywood making bad choices about projects we tend to bundle everyone together, yet we forget that the writers, directors, actors, etc are people and have their own values, their own beliefs, and tend to know when a film idea is right or wrong just as much as we do.
So is it a great surprise to find that directors are turning down the chance to bring the Planet of the Apes franchise back to life? I actually think it is for many of us, myself included, because I am surely guilty of lumping everyone in Hollywood into the one pot on occasion.
It was back in November of 2008 that we first heard of a remake of Planet of the Apes, but that was corrected when we heard it was to be a remake of Conquest of the Planet of the Apes film, however when a director was signed on, Scott Frank to be exact, we learned what his story was to be about.
It turned out that it would reinvent the franchise and ignore the previous films and the reason that they gave for the beginning of the uprising of the apes and instead create a new beginning, with the rising of the intelligent Apes coming from a single ape genetically engineered by humans called Ceaser.
However bad the idea sounded, and frankly I think it did sound bad, the film was suddenly killed and Frank was let go from the project. The word was the film was over, but I wasn't so sure, it felt too big a project to stop with the leaving of one director. Let me go back to what I said at the time:
I'm not entirely convinced that the film is dead. Looking at the direction of Scott Frank's film, the studio might be felling a little scared of the idea. They've already done one Planet of the Apes away from the original series, okay, technically it was the one that was nearer the original story than any of them, but that film wasn't a success.
Imagine when the executives sat down with this remake and it read nothing like the original films, I bet they were reliving the Burton version in their minds and the panic spreading across their faces.
Perhaps what we've seen is the studio clearing out Scott Frank's remake and wanting to return to the original series. Maybe it's not dead and we'll hear of someone new taking on the task, and when they announce theirs, it will sound much more like the original Apes.
I still think that's the case. However now I'm not so sure that they've reverted to the original plan, otherwise this latest story wouldn't be emerging. It appears, according to sources for New York Magazine through AITH, and remember the salt, the Fox producer Peter Chernin is working around Hollywood names trying to get someone to direct the film, and it's not working.
He has had discussions with Kathryn Bigelow, Robert Rodriguez, and Tomas Alfredson (who just made the upcoming biopic The Danish Girl, starring Nicole Kidman as the first man to undergo a sex-change operation), but all of them have declined.
Well done them I say, but it isn't over, it seems that he's working his way down the list, and if the rumours are right he's set to approach...
Albert and Allen Hughes (The Book of Eli); Pierre Morel (Taken); James McTeigue (Ninja Assassin); Dennis Illiadis (The Last House on the Left), and Scott Stewart (Legion)
Now they are all good directors, but when is someone going to say yes, or rather how far down the list is he going to have to go to say yes?