Saturday, February 10, 2007

Finally, An Intriguing Remake

While I'm not necessarily a fan of Hollywood's regurgitation of anything that was remotely popular over the last 30 years or so (really, did Poseidon need to be remade?), I'm intrigued by news from Dark Horizons that Capricorn One is about to get the remake treatment. While it didn't set the box office on fire, it was a mild hit back in 1978, and was a big favorite of mine as a kid. It played into my love of sci-fi as well as the conspiratorial political atmosphere that I was growing up with (and very conscious of). Here's a quick recap of the basics of the plot from DH (also, watch the trailer over at IMDB):
Elliott Gould, James Brolin, O.J. Simpson, Karen Black, Telly Savalas, Sam Waterston and Brenda Vaccaro all starred in the original 1978 thriller about the first manned Mars mission.

The astronauts are pulled off the launchpad and forced for several months to work in a secret soundstage where they fake the landing expedition due to a major defect in the space vehicle which NASA just can't admit too.

Meanwhile a journalist is on the trail of the truth, yet every time he gets closer someone tries to take him out.
My first gut reaction was, Why?!?! But then, I started to think that the time is ripe for a rip-roaring yarn of big government trying to pull the wool over the nation's eyes. And then I noticed who was doing the writing -- Peter Buchman, who's married to a fellow St. Olaf alum and old roomie of mine. Peter recently was credited with the screenplay for Eragon (though I heard others were involved after him), and he's been working with Steven Soderbergh on his upcoming two Che Guevera films (Guerilla and The Argentine). I emailed him to congratulate him on Capricorn, but to also plead to keep in my favorite scene, where the astronaut played by Sam Waterston (who's a bit of a crack-up) tells himself a joke to stay motivated as he's climing the side of a mountain in his escape at the end of the movie. Thankfully, the joke stays in (at least in the screenplay).


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