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Thread: Ben Hur 2 / Remake

  1. #1

    Ben Hur 2 / Remake

    Hahasha...Not again!!

    MGM may have sold their rights to the Charlton Heston film years ago, but the 1880 Lew Wallace novel is public domain, giving the studio the opportunity to do business with Keith Clarke, who wrote a spec script from that source material that'd differ enough from the 1959 classic.
    According to Deadline, this version of BEN-HUR would focus more on the younger years of Judah Ben-Hur and Massala during their childhood friendship before some attitude changes set in, placing them on opposite sides of a feud. Furthermore, a parallel story of Jesus Christ would be told, with Ben-Hur crossing his path on a few occasions, which leads to him becoming a strong believer in Jesus as the Messiah.

  2. #2
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Bring on the CGI chariot race!
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  3. #3
    Senior Member The Silly Swede's Avatar
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    Worst idea ever.
    "No presh from the Dresh!"

  4. #4
    They're going to have to add a lot of new material to make this work. There is subtext in the novel about the youth of Judah Ben-Hur and Massala that suggests a direction to take the story in, but no exposition. Whether or not this works depends on the quality of writing, and I no longer trust MGM, or any other studio to play the scene. Instead they will impose some half-baked agenda and generally screw it up. If the film is undertaken by Europeans and invested with a European sensibility, it would stand a better chance of amounting to something. How many made-for-cable remake versions of SPARTACUS are there now?

    To air a pet peeve of mine, I've never liked the ultra-widescreen 2.76:1 aspect ratio of BEN-HUR. Even in the theater, the image is too narrow. I would have preferred the standard 1:85 or 2:35 composition. There is nothing in the 2.76:1 that could not be achieved in 1:85 or 2:35. I understand the seeming need fpor the gimmick at the time but 2.76:1 is no advantage.

    As an irrelevant aside, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Chirst is the novel Lew Wallace wrote when he was governor of New Mexico. Instead of resolving the Lincoln County War and giving the pardon he had promised to Billy Bonney for testifying against the criminals responsible for the insurrection, Wallace sat in the Palace of Governors in Santa Fe buying silver mines and writing this Biblical parable. It's an inspired book, timeless even, and reveals just how far away the author's mind was while New Mexico Territory burned. I have a 1st edition signed by Wallace in 1881, the year he sent Sheriff Pat Garrett to kill the teenager who wouldn't go away. In double-crossing the Kid and ignoring the hostilities in the Territory, Wallace missed the better story unfolding right before his eyes ... none of which has anything to do with a proposed remake of BEN-HUR.

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    Last edited by Richard--W; 01-15-2013 at 03:35 PM.
    "I've been to college, but I can still speak English when business demands it."
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  5. #5
    Administrator Ian Jane's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Richard--W View Post
    How many made-for-cable remake versions of SPARTACUS are there now?
    Yeah, you're probably onto something there. With the success of the STARZ TV series' that's probably the style if will emulate.

    Quote Originally Posted by Richard--W View Post
    As an irrelevant aside, Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Chirst is the novel Lew Wallace wrote when he was governor of New Mexico. Instead of resolving the Lincoln County War and giving the pardon he had promised to Billy Bonney for testifying against the criminals responsible for the insurrection, Wallace sat in the Palace of Governors in Santa Fe buying silver mines and writing this Biblical parable. It's an inspired book, timeless even, and reveals just how far away the author's mind was while New Mexico Territory burned. I have a 1st edition signed by Wallace in 1881, the year he sent Sheriff Pat Garrett to kill the teenager who wouldn't go away. In double-crossing the Kid and ignoring the hostilities in the Territory, Wallace missed the better story unfolding right before his eyes ... none of which has anything to do with a proposed remake of BEN-HUR.
    Interesting. I knew of Wallace's political background but didn't realize where he was at, chronologically, when he wrote the book.
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  6. #6
    Pallid Hands Andrew Monroe's Avatar
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    Fascinating stuff, Richard. As a confirmed book lover I envy you that signed first edition.

    As much as the idea of remaking BEN HUR now turns me off personally, I have to say it has the potential to do well if done with care. There seems to be an audience for this if the GLADIATOResque elements are heavily emphasised.

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