I've got an idea, let's just try and take every campy film out there, especially the ones only loved for their irresistible badness, and morph them into serious cinema. Who needs a wise-cracking Ash and his boomstick when you can have a stoic and bland hero growl whilst massacring baddies? Why have fuzzy killer tomatoes attack when they can be real tomatoes with an honest blood lust and fangs? Why have car races where you get points for hitting passerby when you can have grown men racing around for their lives and taking it seriously?
That last one, we've already gotten in the form of Death Race, and now The Hollywood Reporter reports that Joe Gazzam has been tapped to write the new adaptation of Barbarella, and: "The new take on the iconic character will not be campy, though it will keep the sexuality; there will be seductions, but the focus will be on the adventure." Yes, this means that Robert Rodriguez is completely out, and now Robert Luketic (Monster-in-Law, The Ugly Truth, 21) is taking over the directorial responsibilities. This is no joke.
Can we please stop this madness already? If you want to make a sexy girls in space film and have it focus on action rather than camp, why not just write it up and put it out there? Why take the classic Barbarella and banish it to badness? (And not the good type of badness.) Hollywood just can't stop doing this. I get the remake bandwagon -- in troubled economic times, an old and beloved property with fans is a safer bet than something new and adventurous. I don't like that mindset, but at least I understand it.
What I don't understand is insisting on a remake and then changing the fundamental draw of the original project. Is this supposed to still appeal to fans? I don't think so. Instead, the studio just severs the ties that they were looking for, and rips out the heart that made the first take so beloved. What a serious waste of time.
What campy cult classic will be next? I shudder to think...