Hollywood needs larger focus on original stories, less on reboot films


“It” is one of many films in the box office that are not new but are remakes. (Youtube)

The reboot of “It” came out recently. And guess what? The movie did well in the box office, with a weekend gross of up to $60 million and $218 million total. Now it’s hinted that more Stephen King adaptations are coming to the big screen.

Don’t get me wrong; I love Stephen King. I was completely absorbed by the encounter between Thad and his evil twin in “The Dark Half.” I have followed Stu Redman on his journey back north in “The Stand.” But to see these stories commercialized and revamped again? They’ve been already told, were successful and were praised by the public way back in the 80’s.

So what about new stuff?  What’s cooking now in 2017? What’s out there that’s original and has received attention that will come to life on the big screen? The answer is not much. New stories aren’t receiving any attention from the big leagues in Hollywood, and here’s why.

Hollywood keeps a safety net below themselves. And that safety net is the many manuscripts of movies based on popular stories first put out in other forms of media that they know for a fact will get good numbers at the box office. They don’t want to take the risk and go with a movie story that’s original, out of fear that they’ll lose their precious thousands of moviegoers.

This compares to book publishers not accepting works from unknown authors. The writing could be something different than the popular teenage vampire story. Or it’s not a “Game of Thrones” sequel, but something just as good.  But publishers don’t like the game of chance so they don’t even give it an opportunity.

What does this mean for aspiring writers? It means that those who want to write something never written before won’t get the chance for their writing to be published. Screenwriters and directors are the same as writers. Originality is actually not what the big folks who publicize the stories want. They know the public has a mass favoritism towards a classic, and so they revive it as a movie. So, if you see a movie completely different from your usual story archetypes, just give it a chance. Who knows, it may just be the next big thing. All it needs is attention.

Joseph Frare is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joseph.Frare@uconn.edu  

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