Friday, April 30, 2010

Guest Blog: Remakes and Adaptations

Tripp Stryker week is almost over! The Bitter Script Reader will be back on Monday, tanned, rested and probably with a script that still needs work.

A Nightmare on Elm Street is coming out today and I couldn’t be more thrilled. It’s about time someone did a back to basics approach with the series, a total restart to clear out all the detritus. Thing is, I’m seeing a lot of whiners all over the internet, decrying the fact that this movie was even made.

Get a life, will you people?

This is a fucking business. More than that, movies are modern mythology. They’re campfire stories told again and again for the enjoyment of the masses. Did anyone really want to see Robert England haul his geriatric ass around one more time? I’ll give them this – that rumor about New Line doing the Nightmare prequel was pretty cool. Had they told the story of Freddie when he was just a child killer, that might have had merit.

But hey, they didn’t and now we have a fresh start and a new interpretation of one of film’s greatest monsters. This sort of relaunch happens all the time in comics and no one complains, so why is it such a big deal when a movie series starts over from ground zero? I checked this morning and my Nightmare on Elm Street box set is still sitting on my shelf. It didn’t crumble into dust at midnight, and whattya know, the DVD still works and everything. The old movie is still there so who am I to piss on the people eager to see the new one?

I’ve also heard a lot of bitching about the Battleship and the Monopoly movies. So fucking what? I’m excited for these! I know it would have to take a shit load of imagination to find a story in those premises and I bet it’ll be goddamn entertaining to watch. The doomsayers are acting like this is the first time something was translated from one medium to another.

The same thing happens when a recent popular novel is adapted. Have you heard the whining about Nicholas Sparks’ novels being filmed as movies before the book even comes out? So what? I think it’s great! Synergize. Strike while the iron is hot and all of that. If they’re smart, they’ll get to work on a new Twilight novel and release it the same day as its movie adaptation. Can you imagine the hype and the cash they could make from that?

Better still, do that with Harry Potter 8. The hype from that would totally break the internet in half.

Film adaptations have been around as long as film existed. Open your ears to this – The Grapes of Wrath was published in 1939, and I know it was acclaimed because I was forced to read it in 9th grade English. You know what else I remember from that snorefest? That there was a movie adaptation that I watched in lieu of reading the book. Guess when the movie came out? 1940.

Yeah, they didn’t even wait for the ink to dry on the first run before adapting it. John Steinbeck was the Stephanie Meyer of his day.

So do me a favor: If you hate the very idea of a new Nightmare relaunch, just don’t see the film. Don’t be one of those pussies who walks in with an attitude of “This is going to blow and I can’t wait to rant on the internet about exactly where they went wrong with this and failed the make the movie I wanted them to make.” If you want to hate the movie, I can guarantee you will. Don’t pretend like you’re going to give it any kind of fair shake by going to see it.

And if you are going, I’ll see you at Graumann's Chinese at 7:30. And possibly at 10:30 if the film kicks as much ass as I expect.

I had a blast this week, team. When you get to Development Hell, tell ‘em Tripp Stryker sent ya!

Tripp Stryker is tired of getting hate mail at but he welcomes any and all scandalous pic from smokin' hot chick readers. I'm casting a movie soon and need a ton of hotties. Send something that shows of your bod and I might make your dreams come true.


  1. For all those who took Trip's banter to the first degree, it's only personal if you took it personally. And if you didn't learn anything new, you could have at least acknowledge the tongue-in-cheek, ruffling-of-feathers for the sake of an alternative perspective. Not everything has to be catered to our fragile egos. (Hate mail? Really???)

    1. Real writers make the rules, they don’t follow them.

    2. Getting an agent is like getting laid. What you need to do as a writer is get through the “nos” fast enough so you can reach that “yes” without wasting your time on dead ends.

    3. Believe in yourself.

    4. Don’t let anyone make you question your art.

    5. This is a fucking business.

    Thanks, Tripp.

  2. Tripp,

    WTF? You said if I slept with yu, yu would get me an audition for the Laker girls. Now yu don't return my phone calls, and I'm still dancing for the frickin' Clippers. Yu are a dick.


  3. So ... on top of being a moron and an egomaniacal jerk, Tripp turns out to be Old School sexist, too ... and he's casting a movie and lookin' for would-be starlets. What a Hollywood innovation! What a creative mind!
    I don't know how many loyal readers BSR lost this week, but I am now among them.
    Whatever BSR's original mission was, he seems to have lost the thread.

  4. I'm amazed at how many people are declaring that they're going to stop reading the blog because of a few sarcastic posts.

    1. Haven't we learned from the Wonder Woman joke not to take everything at face value?

    2. Don't most writers love sarcasm? I consider this a 'read between the lines' exercise...

  5. Aw crap, hotcliperzgirl found me. Let this be a lesson to all of you - never blog using your real name.

    Brittany - Thanks for being an it-getter. You've earned a gold star.

    Fame or Famine - I'm gonna give you 2/3 of an "it-getter" gold star. You're warm, but not totally on fire.

    Clearly I need to suggest to Bitter that he should discuss subtext and satire in upcoming posts. I think I'll suggest it and tell him it's a modest proposal. (Hmmm... there's something familiar about that phrase. I might have to Google it.)

    crap. For some reason I bumped the bold button in a few spots. Sorry about the random format screw-up people.

  6. Why so serious?

    Tripp's comments were great advice wrapped in anecdotes that were funny as hell.

    Getting all precious about writing or wounded when someone challenges your ideas on how the business works isn't gonna get anybody anywhere.

    Thanks for the read, Tripp.

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  8. You had me going there for a minute, until I got to:

    "This sort of relaunch happens all the time in comics and no one complains"

    And then I knew you were taking the piss.

  9. Nice to meet you~!!!. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

  10. Yeah!!! The studios are out to make money! They want the built-in audience, so it makes perfect sense for them to adapt anything they can get their hands on, remake every old hit, pile on sequel after sequel, and recycle any previously-good idea that comes to mind!!!

    Battleship and Monopoly and Viewmaster are going to rock!!! And if they don’t, at least the studio made some money. WHY THE HELL would they take risks buying specs or try to create original material when there is so much AWESOME pre-branded stuff out there!!?!?!

    The system is working great, which is why we had so many absolutely fucking fantastic films this year. Every weekend I just couldn’t decide what new studio-produced movie to fork over my money to – sometimes I had to see 2 or 3 flicks in one weekend!

    Truth to power, Tripp!!!! Say it like it is, brother!!! I can’t wait for the all the big budget cinematic treasure on the horizon to arrive, yo.

  11. This was all a joke? DAMMIT! Do you know how much trouble I'm in?

  12. Let's just say that if Stryker were posting here all the time, I wouldn't bother reading.

    Isn't claiming it's satire the last refuge of poor writers?

  13. OK, we get it, a lot of you wouldn't read a blog written by Tripp. Now stop being a bunch of pussies. Unless you happen to be a victim mentioned in one of his stories, there's nothing offensive in his posts.