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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Is the idea of keeping the original crew intact when resurrecting a dormant movie franchise the best plan?

By Simon Brew, Den of Geek
October 5, 2010

It's hardly news that Hollywood is circling many of its long-ish dormant franchises for fresh opportunities to make cash. Whether you liked it or not, Indiana Jones And The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, for instance, pulled in over $700m at the box office alone, nearly 20 years after Indy and co rode into the sunset at the end of The Last Crusade. It's by some distance the most successful Indy outing to date, in pure box office terms.

Bruce Willis, meanwhile, left it over a decade to return to John McClane with Die Hard 4.0, and again, he was rewarded with the franchise's biggest box office take to date.

Right now, then, umpteen franchises are being primed for resurrection. Men In Black is coming out of mothballs after nearly a decade. Rumours continually surround Ghostbusters III, which seems no closer to a shoot right now. Mad Max, meanwhile, is set to go before the cameras again imminently. We've got new Alien movies coming, a possible third outing for Bill & Ted, ongoing chatter about the long-mooted Evil Dead IV, vague noise on Gremlins 3, and just maybe Jurassic Park 4. Midnight Run 2 has been mentioned, but we'd be amazed if it happened.

But all of this has set me thinking. Because there's a stumbling block that movie executives face when they choose to resurrect a franchise from yesteryear. And that's just how much of the original creative talent do you call on? Or, more specifically, do you get the same director back?

When a franchise is brought back to life, should the original director come with it?

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