In an effort to drain horror fans of their hard earned money and to win the award for Laziest Horror Movie Attempt ever, a new horror flick will be coming to a small screen near you very soon. What’s it about? Well, it’s about this group of kids who head to a cabin in the woods for some good ol’ fashion shenanigans but wind up contracting a highly contagious flesh eating virus. Bonus – it’s from Eli Roth. Sound familiar? If you were wondering why it sounds like 2002’s Cabin Fever, there’s a simple explanation: Eli Roth is remaking his own movie, as a producer this time, and in a display of supreme laziness, the remake will simply follow the script of the original movie.
Cabin Fever is an absolutely disgusting, fun horror comedy that introduced director Eli Roth to the world. The effects of the virus are brilliantly demonstrated and there are plenty of scenes that had audiences cringing sprinkled throughout the entire film. You remember this deliciously horrible scene, right?
As fans of the original movie may be aware, Cabin Fever spawned two other entries in the franchise: 2009’s Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever, a sequel which simply attempted to out-gross the original without having the fun story attached, and the prequel Cabin Fever: Patient Zero, which was released earlier this year. Patient Zero tried to be a bit more character driven but still missed the mark. I do not claim to know how much money either of those later movies made but it is easy to imagine that since they each carried micro-budgets, they probably made at least their production budget back. Plans for another prequel, Outbreak, had been floating and last word was that the fourth entry in the franchise would be released later this year. No word on whether or not this plan has changed with the remake announcement.
The puzzling thing about this announcement is the fact that the franchise was likely still earning money and many fans of the original were following the series as it continued. Generally, in a case like this, the production company wants to milk the franchise for everything it’s worth, no matter how many people are still following the series. Hell, Wrong Turn 6 just hit home video and can you even remember the last time you saw a Wrong Turn movie you enjoyed? Even movies like Anaconda and Lake Placid gave viewers sequel after sequel that no one wanted. In Cabin Fever‘s case, however, people were still watching. So, why reboot a series that may still have some steam in it? I am not going to pretend that Patient Zero was fantastic or groundbreaking but it was enjoyable and I was actually looking forward to seeing Outbreak, as I’m sure many other fans were as well.
I am all for remakes that can add something new to the story. Movies like 2004’s Dawn of the Dead and 1986’s The Fly are great examples of how a remake can surpass the original with a new director and/or new technology to bring a story to life. Unfortunately, those movies are few and far between. Instead, horror fans are more often given remakes that capitalize on the characters many of us love that just can’t deliver on the story (Nightmare on Elm Street, anyone?). Even when remakes stick (painfully) close to the original, such as 2006’s The Omen or 1998’s Psycho, it only reminds fans that the remake was completely unnecessary and serves only to incite our disappointment. Eli, I really hope you are reading this.
I am a huge fan of Eli Roth and am still dreaming of the day that Thanksgiving becomes a reality. For those that may have missed Grindhouse, here is a taste of just how cool that movie could be.
I absolutely cannot understand why Roth and company would choose to go this route rather than at least trying to rewrite for a remake. I suppose they may want to keep the franchise relevant, which is why they have enlisted youngsters Gage Golightly (MTV’s ‘Teen Wolf’), Dustin Ingram (Disney XD’s ‘Lab Rats’), Samuel Davis (Sin City: A Dame to Kill For), Matthew Daddario (When the Game Stands Tall) and Nadine Crocker (Dead Girl) to star in the new film. The studio, for some reason, seems to be fast tracking this one and shooting begins this week. It may be fun to see what relatively new director Travis Zariwny does with this cast based on the same script as the original but probably not.
Are you a fan of the Cabin Fever series? Are you excited about the remake or does the thought make you throw up a little bit?