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That’s why Hollywood remakes films and series & More Breaking News


Another spin-off? Don’t we have enough Fast & The Furious movies already? Why is Disney filming «Pinocchio» again? That’s why spin-offs, remakes and sequels are so popular right now.

09/15/2022, 19:4009/15/2022, 21:01

Corina Muehle
Corina Muehle


It feels like the year of the spin-offs. “House of the Dragon”, “Rings of Power”, “Better Call Saul”, “Wednesay” and “Obi-Wan Kenobi” – to name a few. Disney also recently announced a slew of live-action adaptations of classics like The Lion King, Ariel and Peter Pan.

Film and series fans could slowly but surely suspect that film studios have become lazy and no longer have any original ideas. But is that really the case, or is there a completely different reason for this strategy?

House of the Dragon tells the family story of Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones. Shown here is Rhaenyra Targaryen, Daenerys' great-great-great-great-great-great-grandmother.

House of the Dragon tells the family story of Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones. Shown here is Rhaenyra Targaryen, Daenerys’ great-great-great-great-great-great-grandmother.Image: hbo

Why is it felt that only spin-offs, remakes and sequels are still being produced?

Producing a remake of a successful show has to do with reducing risk, writes media scientist Gerd Hallenberger. Film studios have to invest a lot of money in new projects, although the chances of success are difficult to calculate: “For every hit there are a number of flops”. Strategies on how to avoid these flops are therefore very welcome.

That’s where spin-offs and remakes come in handy because they “already have a solid audience that’s guaranteed to see the film,” says Dr. Matthew Jones, lecturer in film studies, interviewed by Cosmopolitan. “It’s not laziness on the part of the production studios. It’s just good, solid financial logic.”

With remakes, you don’t have to pay a whole team of writers to come up with new ideas from scratch, the concept already exists. This theoretically puts you a step ahead of other films.

Disney and the remake model

Disney in particular keeps recycling classics – a new “Pinocchio” film starring Tom Hanks was recently released. Other examples include Cruella, which is a prequel to 1996’s 101 Dalmatians, and the 2017 remake of Beauty and the Beast, starring Emma Watson.

Emma Stone played villain Cruella De Vil in 2021.

Emma Stone played villain Cruella De Vil in 2021.Image: disney

For Disney, this remake model is obvious. Since these are own projects that are being revived, there are no costs for buying the film rights (studios such as Netflix or Apple TV+, which have not been around for that long, do not have this option). This allows Disney to simply take an existing story and market it to a modern audience in an appealing way with some CGI, a famous actress in the leading role and a great soundtrack.

CNBC reported that between 2010 and 2019, Disney earned around $7 billion from remakes of classics alone. The remakes of the last decade have far surpassed the success of their predecessors at the box office. In 1991, “Beauty and the Beast” grossed $424.9 million worldwide, and 28 years later, the remake grossed $1.2 billion.

Part of that success is due to audiences’ connection to the original film. Another factor is that movies are much more widely distributed these days.

Remakes are opportunities for risky projects

While this remake trend can be frustrating for viewers, there is a perception that it allows filmmakers to be more creative with other projects. Prequels, sequels, reboots, and remakes tend to be financially secure enough to offset flops from riskier projects. This enables studios to tackle films and series that they would otherwise not make.

These risky projects once included the Netflix hit “Squid Game”. The creator of the Korean series was turned away from studios for a decade. In order to embark on a brand new concept like this, studios must first be sure they are making money from other projects. So they relied on well-known stories and franchises.

Even in times of great economic upheaval, Hollywood relies on remakes, sequels and remakes. For example, after the terrorist attack on September 11th, the financial crisis in 2008 and we are currently living through the economic consequences of the corona pandemic.

In such situations, audiences are often left with less money, and Hollywood knows that movie ticket sales will decline as a result. As a result, studios’ risk appetite is falling and they are turning to safe investments.

As long as the remakes and spin-offs do well and keep the studios coffers ringing, such films and series will continue to be produced.

Do you like watching spin-offs and remakes or do you prefer new stories?

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Movie and series preview for September 2022

source: amazon prime video

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