On May 11, 1994, “The Crow,” starring the late Brandon Lee opened in theaters. As an owner of the graphic novel, inked and written by James O’Barr, I watched the film dozens of times and, of course, was devastated by the death of the son of legendary martial artist Bruce Lee.
When talks of a remake broke in 2008, with Stephen Norrington (“Blade,” “The League of Extraordinary Gentleman”) attached to write and direct, I was dead set against it for two reasons. The first was the most obvious. Don’t mess with a Gothic classic. The second had to do with the changes Norrington wished to make to the overall tone and feel of O’Barr’s back from the dead revenge tale.
Thankfully, Norrington’s project fell through. This brings us to today. Three years later, Relativity Media just signed Juan Carlos Fresnadillo (“28 Weeks Later”) to direct the reboot, which is set to start filming this fall. No word yet on who will play Eric Draven, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Joseph Gordon-Levitt was offered the role — unless he is too busy working on “The Dark Knight Rises” as an undisclosed character. As far as a second choice, a no-name with charisma could work; after all, “The Crow” as a well-known property doesn’t necessarily need a big name to draw interest.
Relative Media’s President of Worldwide Production, Tucker Tooley, had this to say about Juan Carlos Fresnadillo:
- We are thrilled to have him at the helm and are excited to work with both Pressman and Apaches on what we all believe will be a compelling and innovative re-imagining of ‘The Crow.’
And Producer Edward R. Pressman added:
- The original “Crow” was groundbreaking cinema; its Gothic visual and musical ideas influenced a generation and cinema itself. With Juan Carlos, we have every confidence that his new “Crow” will have a similar impact on the contemporary audience.
I really don’t see Fresnadillo’s version having any more impact than the original. It certainly won’t be groundbreaking. Take “28 Days Later” for example. That was innovative because of Danny Boyle’s direction and Alex Garland’s solid screenplay. The sequel, helmed by Juan Carlos, although a good follow up, doesn’t measure up. Nothing new was brought to the table. It simply didn’t have the same impact as the first. So it’s doubtful Fresnaldillo’s “Crow” will be as good as Alex Proyas’ was. Additionally, there may not be an actor out there who can match the haunting presence of Brandon Lee.
If you doubt me, and need to be reminded of the original’s greatness, I’ve attached a video that hopefully validates my point.
So, what are your thoughts on the remake? Should it be left alone? Give your opinion to the right.
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