As Scott told you in April, the remake of Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds is soaring forward. It no longer looks like the film will start production this year, but it does seem to be a definite "go." The studio claims that the remake will be based less on the classic Hitchcock film and more on the source material -- a Daphne du Maurier short story. Still, I have no doubt some of Hitchcock's classic visuals will re-appear. Naomi Watts has been circling the Tippi Hedren role for a while now, but she is waiting to see the script (which already has four writers listed) before she officially signs on. The Hollywood Reporter has announced that the film now has a very likely director -- Martin Campbell. Campbell recently won over a lot of critics with Casino Royale, and if his take on The Birds sticks with the same sleek, stylish, subdued style, it could be something worth watching.
Any mention of this project riles up fans of the original, and Michael Bay is listed as one of the producers, which only upsets purists more. Bay's involvement does suggest birds with mini-bazookas on their beaks, but I'm going to go out on a limb and say I'm looking forward to The Birds 2.0: Bye Bye Birdie. Naomi Watts is one of my favorite actresses, and she's elevated genre material before (see The Ring). I don't have some great personal attachment to the original film -- it wouldn't even land on my list of Hitchcock's top ten. I'm not saying this new film would be an improvement, but it could be a scary, suspenseful good time. Yes, it's tempting to hate on the filmmakers for not being original, but how many bird attack movies do we get to see in the multiplexes? I'm all for another one. The new Birds is currently scheduled to fly into theaters on July 3, 2009. "Fly," get it? Cuz they're birds. Thank you.