Neil Marshall’s new reboot of the Hellboy franchise has been met with overwhelmingly negative reviews and disappointing box office reception. Some commentators have noted that the movie added nothing to the character or his world that wasn’t already covered in Guillermo del Toro and Ron Perlman’s Hellboy movies, apart from a forced R rating achieved with flat CGI gore.
Hollywood studios will reboot any and all franchises they have the rights to these days, but they rarely stop to ask if we really need a reboot or not. So, here are 5 Upcoming Franchise Reboots We Need (And 5 We Don’t).
10 We don’t need: Men in Black: International
The Men in Black series of sci-fi action comedies is being rebooted with Chris Hemsworth and Tessa Thompson taking the lead roles and the setting switching to the MIB’s London branch. We don’t need it. A government agency fighting aliens was never what people liked about these movies – it was the pairing of Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones (or Josh Brolin that one time, but he was impersonating Tommy Lee Jones) and the combination of their impeccable chemistry and their clash of personalities.
There’s no doubt that Hemsworth and Thompson will be great in the reboot, but that’s not the point. They’re not Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones – just like David Harbour isn’t Ron Perlman – therefore moviegoers won’t be interested.
9 We need: RoboCop Returns
Neill Blomkamp, one of the finest sci-fi directors working today, is helming a reboot of the RoboCop franchise entitled RoboCop Returns. There was a previous RoboCop reboot in 2014 and it was pretty good, but it made a couple of crucial mistakes: firstly, RoboCop took his helmet off, and most importantly, it did away with the original’s satirical bite.
Blomkamp’s reboot looks like it’ll bring back the old-school ‘80s style of the original as he’s working from an updated version of an unused script written as a direct sequel to the first movie by its writers Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner.
8 We don’t need: Flash Gordon
There has been talk of a Flash Gordon reboot for years, but it’s finally moving forward as the producers are putting together a creative team and getting them to work. Julius Avery, the director of last year’s WWII horror thriller Overlord, has been hired to helm the reboot, while I Am Legend’s Mark Protosevich is writing the script. But the movie isn’t necessary.
The 1980 cult classic starring Sam J. Jones is a timeless gem that can be enjoyed for its cheesiness. The reboot can either be just as camp and wink to the audience – which would be pointless, because that movie already exists – or a gritty Dark Knight-style reinvention, which the source material isn’t suited for (remember the embarrassment of the gritty Fantastic Four reboot?).
7 We need: Candyman
Get Out and Us director Jordan Peele is attached as a producer on the upcoming Candyman reboot. Candyman is the ideal franchise to be given Peele’s unique spin, because it’s an underrated horror classic and it deals with racial themes, much in the same way as Peele’s own films.
The director counts the original Candyman movie among his primary cinematic influences and, while he will just be producing the reboot, he will be taking a hands-on approach with its development. The great Yahya Abdul-Mateen II, who worked with Peele on Us, will play the title character, while the setting will be switched to a more modern gentrified neighborhood.
6 We don’t need: Escape from New York
Leigh Whannell has been tapped to direct a reboot of the Escape from New York franchise. But no one besides Kurt Russell could play Snake Plissken – we’ll have another Alden Ehrenreich on our hands. Plus, John Carpenter made Escape from New York as a response to the Watergate scandal in the ‘70s.
The reboot will be bereft of all of the original’s political context and will therefore be yet another reboot to miss the point of the original. Instead of the U.S. President, the missing politician in the reboot will be a female Senator. Other than that, it seems like it’ll be a more-or-less straightforward rehash, which no one asked for.
5 We need: The Addams Family
We’ve needed a new version of Charles Addams’ classic characters for years. At one point, Tim Burton was working on a stop-motion animated reboot. The Addams Family reboot has an incredible voice cast filled with A-list stars: Oscar Isaac as Gomez, Charlize Theron as Morticia, Chloë Grace Moretz as Wednesday, Finn Wolfhard as Pugsley, Bette Midler as Grandmama, Nick Kroll as Uncle Fester, and Allison Janney as a morally bankrupt and unscrupulous reality TV star who wants the scoop on the strange family. The movie is being released in October, too, so it’ll make a great family night out at the movies for Halloween.
4 We don’t need: Top Gun: Maverick
Fans have been clamoring for a Top Gun sequel for decades and they’re finally getting one. But why? Why do people want a Top Gun sequel, and why is the studio giving us one? Belated sequels are always disappointing: Anchorman 2, Jurassic World, Independence Day: Resurgence, Dumb and Dumber To, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and many, many, many more.
Plus, the subject matter of Top Gun is of its time. Back in 1986, when the first Top Gun movie was released, Reagan had everyone in America feeling patriotic, so a glorified military recruitment video was a huge blockbuster. However, in 2019, America is much more divided on political issues, and most aerial warfare is done with drones. So, Top Gun: Maverick almost definitely won’t work.
3 We need: Spawn
The Spawn comics were initially adapted for the screen in 1997 with Michael Jai White playing the lead role. However, that movie watered down the comics’ dark edge. That’s because Spawn creator Todd McFarlane had nothing to do with the 1997 movie.
But he’s on board to write, direct, and co-produce this reboot starring Jamie Foxx as Spawn and Jeremy Renner as Twitch. It’ll be the Spawn movie that fans have always wanted. McFarlane promises it’ll be a standalone piece bearing an R rating, as well as all the violence and terror from the comics that the first movie was lacking.
2 We don’t need: The Batman
Fans are curious to see who Matt Reeves will cast in the lead role in The Batman, but do we really need it? It was first announced to give Ben Affleck’s Bruce Wayne his own solo movie in the DC Extended Universe. However, Affleck has left the role and hung up the cowl now, so the sole purpose for this movie no longer exists.
The only reason to make it now is to give film audiences yet another Batman when they’re still mostly pleased with Christopher Nolan’s trilogy. Let’s take a break from Batman for a while – would that be the end of the world?
1 We need: Terminator: Dark Fate
James Cameron took cinema by storm with his complex, engaging, brilliantly plotted, and masterfully crafted sci-fi actioner The Terminator. And then he caught lightning in a bottle for a second time with Terminator 2: Judgment Day, one of the greatest sequels of all time.
But after that, he handed over the franchise to studio executives and they’ve since pumped out one disappointment after another. Those studios will finally nail a Terminator reboot – fourth time lucky, right? – because they’ve done what they should’ve done a long time ago: brought back the mind of James Cameron. Deadpool director Tim Miller is also on board.