Idiocracy – Part 2

Hollywood, I its own, bizzare universe. For the most part, those who produce the things we watch – are so out of touch with reality that it amazes me that anyone makes a living in the TV/Movie industry. Yet, not only do they make a living, those “at the top” live quite well.

How does this happen? Is this due to stellar marketing effort by the top studios? Where multi-million dollar ad budgets, now combined with state-of-the-art viral marketing campaigns via the top social networking sites, build enough buzz to elevate even the poorest excuse of a movie to box office success?

Nope – it’s because we’re all idiots.

Case in point – it’s been announced that there is a new movie now in production, based on a 80’s TV series. OK…this is the first mistake. Rarely, if ever, does a movie based on a successful TV show ever to that show justice. I’m thinking maybe the only one in recent years that’s worked is Sex in the City. Now, I was never a fan of the show (being a guy…I’d have to give up my man-card if I thought it was truly worth watching) – but female friends that I have that have seen it enjoyed it. WIth one complaint, though – saying that it was like the writers/producers tried to cram an entire season into two hours.

Second mistake – is taking this 80’s TV show I haven’t named yet – that was very successful, and not using the original actors. Especially when the lead actor in the TV show was so closely identified with the main character. The 80’s TV show in question – is Magnum, P.I. For eight seasons, we all watched the opening montage – TC’s helicopter over Honolulu, then the shot of Tom Selleck smiling at the camera, then pulling away with spinning tires in a Ferrari 308 GTS. Then a shot of Larry Manetti as Rick at the King Kamehameha Club, followed by John Hillerman as Higgins.

Yet, for the remake, the actors named so far – Matthew McConaughey as Thomas Magnum. Steve Zahn as Rick. Tyrese Gibson as TC. And William H. Macy as Higgins. If you pull Tyrese out of this mix, it’s sounds more like a sequel to Sahara, not Magnum. Plus, now, rather than Magnum, TC & Rick being ex-Vietnam vets – they’re talking Gulf War vets. Now – all these actors are good actors. They may have some chemistry, especially since they worked together on a previous film. And…hell – everybody needs to make a living. But – after 8 years of Magnum – doesn’t the “powers that be” in Hollywood get the fact that people don’t identify these actors with Magnum? Seems that only Lucas / Spielburg get it – after almost 20 years, they bring back Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones (and make his newest adventure 20 years after his last) – they even bring back Karen Allen in her original role – and look how well its done at the box-office!

Finally – if you’re going to make all these other mistakes, you’d think someone would suggest bringing in a writer and director that have experience with this type of genre. Nope – wrong again – instead, you bring in a writer who also directs – and who doesn’t have that much experience – you’d pick a guy with a couple of comedy films and commercials under his belt instead. Just to make sure you can elevate this from “mistake” to “idiocracy”. You’d bring in Rawson Marshall Thurber. Who is that? The writer / director of Dodgeball!

I just don’t get it.

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