spn - jensen b&w head tip smile

Why do they do it?

I read this the other day:

Steven Spielberg has committed to his next film, and it will be an adaptation of the Mary Chase Pulitzer Prize-winning play “Harvey,” which will be done as a co-production between 20th Century Fox and DreamWorks.

It is the first screenplay by the bestselling novelist Jonathan Tropper.

It is the story of an amiable eccentric, Elwood P. Dowd, and his friendship with a six and one-half foot tall invisible rabbit, and how it affects every member of his family and community. The play won the Pulitzer Prize in 1944, and was previously turned into the 1950 Universal film that starred Jimmy Stewart and Josephine Hull.


I think it's a terrible idea. Why would anyone want to mess with such a classic? How could a remake possibly be better? (Which, of course, brings to mind the terrible idea of remaking Psycho, and the unholy mess they made of that.) They'll probably make an actual CG rabbit, since they can now, and is that a good thing? I think not. I think a lot of what made the original so good was that the rabbit was invisible.

Harvey isn't my favorite of Jimmy Stewart's films (that would be The Philadelphia Story), but it's still lovely. He's just delightful and so lovable as Elwood P. Dowd.

It looks like both films are actually on YouTube. In pieces, of course. I'm still not sure I approve of putting movies on YouTube. Maybe I'm old-fashioned, but it just seems criminal to me somehow.

So what do you thing about a Harvey remake, yea or nay?


How could anyone be better in the role than this? He's so sweet and sincere.

Here are some lovely scenes from The Philadelphia Story, one of my all-time favorite movies. I've loved it for years and never get tired of it.

The Philadelphia Story is one of my favorites! Such crackling and witty dialogue. Jimmy Stewart is totally awesome, such a sweet soul. :)

ETA to ralph over the Harvey remake. Pity no one's hiring screenwriters with original ideas. >:(

Edited at 2009-08-12 03:57 pm (UTC)
Chiming in to add my love for The Philadelphia Story! And though it's considered heresy in some classic movie circles, I think High Society (the 1956 musical remake with the luminous Grace Kelly, Bing, Frank, and the glorious Celeste Holm) is also a treat. In fact I think I actually prefer it. *hides* ;)

I was a Jimmy Stewart fan before I could walk. He's the only celebrity whose death actually made me tear up a little - a true gentleman and remarkable talent.

The only thing that keeps me from dismissing this news outright is the involvement of The Beard. I love Spielberg - surely he knows the danger of tampering with something like this, right? Perhaps he'll opt to base it more on the play than the movie since there's some difference there. There are ways it could be done, I think, but it's a tight-rope.

Oh, and Harvey contains one of cinema's GREATEST slip-and-falls EVER when the messenger guy leaves the doctor's office and slides about 5 feet on wet floor, spread-eagles on the floor and knocks himself out on a door frame. AWESOME.

It's ok you're not alone, I think I prefer it too though both are brilliant!
Oh my. I saw High Society and thought it was dreadful. I remember thinking that Grace Kelly was awful. O_O I just watched a few clips on YouTube, and it kind of made my skin crawl to hear the words from The Philadelphia Story, which I know by heart, in that travesty of a film. I have, however, added it to my Netflix queue and I'll attempt to watch it again, since you and Pam like it so much. I love the two of you, and we obviously like similar things, so perhaps I'm missing something. I doubt it seriously, though. I do like all of the actors so I suppose it's worth another look just on that basis.

I cried when Jimmy Stewart died. He seemed like such a genuinely sweet and lovely person.

Heh. 'The Beard.' Amongst my Cuban in-laws that's Castro. :D

I like and respect Spielberg. Hopefully he won't let us down, but I still think it's a dodgy idea at best.
Yeah, I suppose for those who are devoted to The Philadelphia Story, High Society will seem lightweight and kitschy. But they feel totally different to me, each one firmly entrenched in their respective decade. I love High Society for those great Cole Porter songs, Frank's voice, Grace's beauty and clothes. It's more trim and tidy than the original, but it's supposed to be. It's a lovely little 50's hatbox of a musical.

Now see? I knew I loved you. :o) The Philadelphia Story is such a fabulous movie!
It truly is, though I have to say that my all-time favorite Kate Hepburn movie is The Lion in Winter. She's freakin' amazing in that. Everyone is. :)
Why! why! why! in God's name does he feel the need to re-make such a classic and beautiful movie! at least Tom Hanks had the good sense to say no to playing the lead!
There should be some sort of preservation order on all James Stewart movies, no one is ever allowed to re-make them, EVER!
Did he already offer the part to Tom? I missed that. Tom is a wonderful actor so he probably could have given a great effort, but I'm glad he turned it down. Maybe he knew better than to mess with a classic and tread in Jimmy Stewart's footsteps. Imagine the comparisons. Anyway, I don't see how anyone could be as good - or why they'd remake it in the first place, as I said before.

Ugh. I did NOT like High Society. Scroll up for my wee rant about it to Wyn. :D
I assume so because I read he'd pulled out because he didn't want to add to the comparison between himself and James Stewart, I have heard him compared to JS quite a few times, I read your rant about High Society, LOL I must admit the first time I saw it I felt the same way, having seen it a few times now I think it's a fun movie on it's own and the cast are great, you really should watch it again!
I'm going to try to watch it again. I rated it "Didn't like it" last time. Time will tell if I can give it a better rating this time. :)

Edited at 2009-08-13 05:56 pm (UTC)
Instead of remaking a classic, Steven should be working on the Abraham Lincoln project that Liam has been committed to for the last FOUR years!!! Jeez. And speaking of remakes, I'm still not too keen on the idea of the Clash of the Titans remake even if Liam is in it. I mean they're messing with Harryhausen stuff.
Oops, in my little Liam moment, forgot to say that I love Jimmy Stewart. Guess I like his older stuff like The FBI Story and Strategic Air Command and Rear Window. Harvey isn't one of my faves, but why mess with a classic?
Oh yeah, I forgot about Lincoln. What's going on with that anyway, do you know?

Rear Window is awesome. I love Grace Kelly in that one too.
Just a few months ago, it was reported that filming would be starting before the end of the year. Next thing I know, Liam is signed to do several pics and Steven wants to do Harvey and another film. Don't know what suddenly happened. One would think that with a director such as Steven, things would get done. *sigh*
I love Harvey!!! Too bad Ewan isn't up for it...he adores Jimmy Stewart and I could see him doing this!!!!
I just don't think they should mess with such a classic. Who knows, though, maybe the screenplay they have is really great. *shrugs* Time will tell. It's not like they'll stop just because I think it's a crap idea. :o)
Did you watch the little clip from the Harvey? It's a very cute movie, and Jimmy Stewart is perfect in the role. He had also been in the play. izzardwizzard said the play is slightly different (I don't know, I've never seen it), so maybe the new screenplay will be more based on that, who knows? Anyway, it's not like my disapproval of the idea will stop the film from being made. Steven didn't exactly call me to get the go-ahead. ;)

I agree, Peter Jackson's King Kong is really well done. I can't watch it, though, because the gorilla is TOO real and he completely breaks my heart. Jorge felt the same way. In fact, we've only seen it the one time.

Edited at 2009-08-13 06:09 pm (UTC)