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What The? Timur Bekmambetov Directing Moby Dick!

by
September 22, 2008

Moby Dick

Out of all the classic movies that could've been remade within the next few years, would anyone have expected Moby Dick to be one of them? And to top that off, Timur Bekmambetov, the Russian filmmaker who brought us Wanted this year, will be directing. As you might have expected (by now), it's going to be a "reimagining" of Herman Melville's classic tale. "Our vision isn't your grandfather's Moby Dick," screenwriter Adam Cooper explained. "This is an opportunity to take a timeless classic and capitalize on the advances in visual effects to tell what at its core is an action-adventure revenge story." I think that means we can expect something as epic and CGI-laden as Peter Jackson's King Kong remake.

Universal Studios reportedly paid in the high six figures for screenwriters Adam Cooper and Bill Collage (both of New York Minute and Accepted previously) to write the screenplay. Apparently their version won't have the first-person narration from Ishmael, instead it's been described as "graphic novel-style." This allows them to depict the whale's destruction of other ships prior to its encounter with Ahab’s Pequod, and Ahab will be depicted more as a charismatic leader than a brooding obsessive. "We wanted to take a graphic novel sensibility to a classic narrative," said Collage. With these kind of production values being put into the project, this is definitely going to be a big "creature feature" tentpole for Universal.

I guess the reason why I'm so taken aback by this news tonight is that I somehow thought Moby Dick was one of those "sacred classics" that would never be remade. But then again, I guess I thought King Kong was one of those, too, and look what happened to that. Or actually, any of these remakes that we've seen in the works recently have all been blasphemy anyway. As I start to calm down and take this in, I'm actually starting to think it might not be as bad as I originally thought? Bekmambetov is a great director, as we saw with Wanted, and reimagining this classic tale might actually be a good idea? Moby Dick was first published in 1851 and has been converted into numerous mediums. Could this be good?

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  • Silver
    Hopefully this will bring us closer to our MEG movie :) don't really know how I feel about Moby though...
  • John39
    "Or actually, any of these remakes that we've seen in the works recently have all been blasphemy anyway." Batman was a remake, the Friday the 13th you are so excited to see is a remake, in fact you seem to be on board with several of the remakes being done, now you think all of these remakes are blasphemy? You know you contradict yourself allot on this website.
  • Cock Andrews
    Sounds like they're making a completely new story and just slapping on the "Moby Dick" title.
  • Shige
    Two things. 1. "Bekmambetov is a great director" You say that after one half assed movie ? He can thank Angelina Jolie and hords of horny teenagers for that one. Did you see the crap that is called Daywatch ? Or any other russian film Bekmambetov has destroyed ? 2. "This is an opportunity to take a timeless classic and capitalize on the advances in visual effects to tell what at its core is an action-adventure revenge story." Yeah right. This is an opportunity to take a classic tale, destroy it and make some cash while adding absolutely nothing in neither creative nor visual department. Sad to see they consider CGI being something to wrap a story around.
  • Staatz
    Why do they want to make a big dumb special effects piece out of classic literature? Have they run out of 80's franchises already? Boy, I can't *wait* till they turn the "Tell-Tale Heart" into torture porn!
  • vegeta
    Yeah #2!! GIVE US MEG!!!
  • safichan
    i can never truly understand why Alex would think Timur is a great director... what kind of criteria would he use to fit such director as a "great" one?? there are too many "great" directors he loves to tell us...tooooooooooo many... everytime, he will mention this director is great...that director is great...blah...blah...blahh.... which one is truly great?? i cant never fully understand you Alex...the word "great" is just stuck in your mind for time to time...its endless... Wanted is a DISASTER...one of the most ridiculous overhype movie of the century with an insane mindless CGI and terrible acting...its not fun...its a "GREAT" horrible movie...(i think this time the word "great" seems fit)
  • D-9
    This truley is a grand idea, but will the younger generation want to go see it. I am damn sure most have never read the Novel, unless made so in school. This will attract the more mature movie patron. "WANTED" was alot of fun based on the material it sprang from. Is Timur the right choice? I would rather have Jackson involved, but that will not happen.
  • vegeta
    After reading this story as a kid, I vowed never to get on the bad side of a white whale. The movie with Patrick Stewart was pretty intense too.
  • Peloquin
    Bekmambetov is an amazing director...the Watcher series are phenomenal films and are considered in Russia as their Matrix trilogy equivalent which American's cherish as an action classic.
  • darrin
    now we talking. this will be something to see. they should make more monster films
  • William
    @ #4 "Did you see the crap that is called Daywatch ? Or any other russian film Bekmambetov has destroyed ?" Your opinion only. Judging by the respone both Nightwatch and Daywatch received abroad, more then a few people thought he did a fine job. (including me)
  • http://www.entertainmenttodayandbeyond.com entertainmenttodayandbeyond.com
    This project has huge potential if they focus on story and character! I must admit, Im not a big fan of Peter Jackson's King Kong, as its a bloated movie with some bad casting and little heart!
  • bat
    While I liked Wanted (even though it was nothing like the comic) Daywatch sucked!!! the story was complete #$@&, and while the visuals were cool-car driving on the side of the building- they weren't cool enough to save the movie.
  • avoidz
    They'll be remaking Greek myths soon...
  • Kevin
    The original movie was good but many of the best scenes in the book are not present in the movie. Also, as great of an actor as Gregory Peck was, he was poorly cast as Ahab. As such, I'd LOVE to see a new version of Moby Dick. The concept above is NOT it! I'm tired of this hipster quick-edit graphic-novel inspired crap. Make a real movie, not a video game.
  • Shige
    #12 What response ? It was straight to DVD in most countries and box office intakes were minimal just as as the reviews. So what response are you talking about ? Even domestically it was successeful mostly among the fanbase and the school kids.
  • William
    In Russia, Night Watch grossed over $16 million while Day Watch went on to gross over $30 million. I was referring to the response achieved in Russia, since it only played in a handful of theaters in the U.S. (not sure how many in the U.K.) I'm not saying the films were great...in fact I think they could have been a whole lot better if they had stayed closer to their written counterparts...but at least they felt like they gave off something a bit different then some of the other fantasy films hollywood is coming out with these days.
  • danimal808
    Dan Link saw this title and got excited cause he thought it was a gay porno!!

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