Disney recently released the teaser trailer for its reboot of 1997’s Pete’s Dragon. While the original was full of musical numbers, a cartoon dragon and Mickey Rooney, the 2016 version appears to be ‘grittier’.
The trailer’s scenes are full of tense voice overs with images of woods occupied by a feral, half-naked boy. There’s also some car crashes and people looking horrified at something off screen. Robert Redford and Bryce Dallas Howard show up, but other than that not much happens until the very end where the silhouette of a dragon appears to swoop up the wild boy as he jumps off a cliff, to ‘tease’ us.
Now I know movie makers seem to want to cash in on the now decade old gritty remake ala Batman Begins, but I have to ask, “Really, Disney? This seems like a good idea to you?” Once again, the company takes a beloved story from our youth and feels they have to remake it completely until only the title and hints of characters from the original remain. How long will Disney carry this on? What is worse is that it’s the corny Witch Mountain and Freaky Friday type movies that get to be butchered to be sold to a generation who would probably enjoy the originals more.
I’d like to now take this time to look into my crystal ball and help create a few of the next horrendous remakes:
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea with Will Smith in the Kurt Douglas role. I know Disney has actually been trying to get traction for this idea for years. There’s the idea of a rap version of the song Whale of a Tale that can be done as a summer radio hit tie in. “Uh huh, uh huh. I’ve got a whale of a tale to tell you, yo. A whale of a tale or deuce, uh huh.”
Apple Dumplin’ Gang staring Melissa McCarthy and Kristin Wiig in the Don Knots and Tim Conway roles. Thanks to Deadpool, Disney can work blue and get that newly coveted R rating.
The Black Hole, but with a Marvel universe tie in. Extend that to the Guardians of the Galaxy space comic’s portfolio, Disney. I dare you.
The Cat From Outer Space with Kevin Hart as Ken Berry’s role. Selling point for this one is that no one can remember who was whom in the old Disney movies and you can get Kevin Hart to do dozens of sequels that have nothing to do with the original remake: That Darn Cat, Gus, The Million Dollar Duck, The Shaggy D.A. Oh wait, Disney already ruined the last one with a non-gritty remake, which brings me to my last suggestion.
Herbie. This time make him a Fiat. Fiat’s are hot right now. Get Lindsey Lohan to make an appearance and your gritty factor goes up exponentially.
Until they start taking my ideas seriously all Disney has is Pete’s Dragon, coming to theaters August 12th.