Columbia Pictures wants to make a new version of its cult-classic 1997 thriller ‘Anaconda’, and has hired Evan Daugherty to pen the script for what is described as not a sequel or a reboot, but a “reimagining.” Reportedly, Columbia is eyeing the success of ‘The Meg’ as inspiration. Daugherty is noted for such screenplays as ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’, ‘Divergent’, ‘Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles’ (2014), and ‘Tomb Raider’.
No producer or director is attached at this time.
‘Anaconda’ was released in 1997 and was lambasted by critics, but became a hit despite that. Director Luis Llosa appears to have quit directing after that, although he did return to helm a small Spanish drama, ‘The Feast of the Goat’ in 2005. The first ‘Anaconda’ is notable for being one of the earliest movies in the careers of stars Ice Cube, Jennifer Lopez, and Owen Wilson. Jon Voigt and Eric Stoltz also starred.
In 2004, Columbia Pictures released the sequel ‘Anacondas: The Hunt for the Blood Orchid’, but neither Llosa nor the original cast was involved. In fact, the only noteworthy member of the sequel’s cast is Morris Chestnut. But despite being a low-budget affair with no big names and terrible reviews, it was financially successful.
Three more sequels were released directly on home video, ‘Anaconda 3: Offspring’ (2008), ‘Anacondas: Trail of Blood’ (2009) and ‘Lake Placid vs. Anaconda’ (2015), a crossover with a franchise also based on a cult classic giant animal monster movie. Like ‘Anaconda’, 1999’s ‘Lake Placid’ led to a series of low-budget direct-to-video sequels. Unlike ‘Anaconda’ which was simply trashed by critics, ‘Lake Placid’ actually received acclaim from many, who saw it as something of a parody.
And when ‘The Meg’ — the movie that Columbia is using as a template — was released, it was also well-received, perhaps not so much as a parody, but at least as pure dumb escapist fun. Very little was expected of ‘The Meg’, but it made a surprising $530 million at the box office.
This project is in the earliest stages but check back for updates. What do you think of ‘Anaconda’ getting a remake?
Source: The Hollywood Reporter