No "Remake" for LOTR

by Rogorn 

I think it's very unlikely that LOTR is made into 'motion picture representation' ever again, or if it is, it will be many many years from now, maybe when 3D or some other major technical breakthrough is widely used in film-making. This was the case with, arguably, the most important remakes ever done, those of 'The ten commandments' and 'Ben-hur', where colour, sound and the increasing popularity of a very young invention like cinema made possible new versions of popular stories.

Another reason why a film might be remade is because it's based on a play, and therefore, they are stories made to be represented over and over again from their birth. That's why you can't put a face to Hamlet, for example, and they will periodically be remade without a second thought in the same way that new theatre montages will be done too.

Finally, another case might be when the first attempt was poor: witness LOTR's own previous venture from Ralph Bakshi. This happened also for example with Dune (which showed what could have happened to a one-film LOTR), but even in this case the new attempt was a TV series, made because of a) cheaper effects and b) the possibility of extended screen time.

None of these reasons apply to PJ's LOTR. Whoever remakes it will have to get at least 12 hours of screen time, whichever the format, and work for years, whichever the new technical breakthroughs are. And all this to maybe run the risk of not bettering the present effort: witness 'The planet of the apes'. A bigger stinker than Gollum.

Highly unlikely. Think back and tell me what's the biggest and classic-est film you think it's been remade as such. Not reprised, like 'West Side story' would be a take on 'Romeo and Juliet'. I mean actually made again. You will find that the really big films don't get remade that easily, if ever, unless one of the three reasons I gave before applies. 'Psycho'?. Sorry, Viggo, mate, but keep that one quiet in your CV.

A 100% animated film, with no actors to worry about and only replaceable journeymen losing their eyesight over thousands of computer screens is the only feasible possibility I see, and not soon.

Also, when a film is very succesful, it's often expected that copycats will follow thick and fast, and that is sometimes the case (for example the judicial thrillers and the serial murderers of the 1990s), but sometimes is not. 'The western is back' was said when 'Dances with wolves' was a sensation. It didn't happen. In the same way, a golden aga of sword and sorcery was prophesied after LOTR. It's also not happening. In a few years LOTR will be bracketed instead with Gladiators, Troys, Arthurs and Crusaders in what could be called the 'Massive' era (after the programme that makes possible all those enormous battle scenes). Or maybe it will be called 'the Bloom', as Orlando seems to be in most of these films.