Earlier this week we got to see the first teaser video for the forthcoming remake of the horror classic Carrie. Today we are hearing that plans are in the works for a remake of another horror classic film, Poltergeist. At first, I was really NOT at all interested in hearing anything about a remake … and then, I heard that Sam Raimi may be involved. First it was reported that he would only be a producer but now it’s being said that he will direct. As much as I don’t love the idea of remaking classic films (that are already PERFECT the way they are), I might be interested in seeing a remake of Poltergeist if it was directed by Sam Raimi.
MGM, which is remaking movies left and right, wants to do a new version of Poltergeist. We’ve known that for some time, and over the past year the story got interesting with news of the involvement of playwright and Rabbit Hole writer David Lindsay-Abaire and then the addition of Sam Raimi … Raimi’s role was quickly clarified as that of producer rather than director. But a new piece on Lindsay-Abaire suggests that Raimi is directing the film after all. I’d shrugged off a piece in THR that paraphrased the writer talking about the movie. Here’s what THR ran: His next project is equally unconventional: He’s penning the script for a remake of Poltergeist, to be directed by Sam Raimi, who he reveals was originally supposed to direct the big-screen adaptation of his Pulitzer Prize-winning play Rabbit Hole before a scheduling conflict got in the way. (John Cameron Mitchell wound up getting the job.) That looks like it could be a moment where Scott Feinberg, who wrote the THR piece, just dropped in info about Poltergeist that has been floating around. But Feinberg says Lindsay-Abaire actually said Raimi is directing the film. After HitFix ran a piece on the project today, Feinberg clarified via Twitter:
@HitFixGregory @devincf @DrewAtHitFix Lindsay-Abaire told me that Raimi was directing it. I had never heard of the possibility before that.
I don’t know about you, but for me the idea of Raimi directing Poltergeist changes things quite a bit. We don’t even know what the script entails at this point, so it could be something that many other directors would turn into a compelling project. (We’ve heard that it features “a family whose house was built on a holy site and whose daughter is taken by ghosts,” which is to say: it’s Poltergeist.) But seeing Raimi go to the ghost house again… that’s tempting. Especially as this comes right on the heels of the first public — and very successful — reveal of footage from the remake of Raimi’s debut feature The Evil Dead. If Raimi can be part of a small cycle of remakes that don’t suck, I’d be pretty happy.
I look at all remakes with a suspicious eye … so, yeah, I’m not really that excited that they are remaking Poltergeist. But, I do trust Raimi and I think he will do a great job with the story IF he does, in fact, direct the film. The questions are many, tho. Will this be a straight remake — with just new versions of the characters? Will this be roughly based on the original with major changes made? Will it be more like a sequel where a different family builds a home on the haunted land? I just rewatched the original film back in January and I was reminded how fantastic a thriller it really is. We’ll have to see how this turns out but … I’m not totally sold on this remake just yet … Are you?