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Christopher Nolan's 'Memento' is Being Remade by AMBI Pictures

by
November 16, 2015

Memento

Another day, another remake. This time it's another movie that just doesn't need to be remade, and may be hitting too close to home for some. Andrea Iervolino and Monika Bacardi's AMBI Pictures have officially announced a remake of Christopher Nolan's 2000 thriller Memento, starring Guy Pearce and Carrie-Anne Moss. It's one of many films ("400 additional critical hits, commercial blockbusters and cult favorites") that AMBI acquired in picking up the Exclusive Media Group film library. They claim in the press release that the remake will "stay true to Christopher Nolan’s vision and deliver a memorable movie that is every bit as edgy, iconic and award-worthy as the original." Okay. But the question always is: do we really need this?

This Memento remake is the first feature production as part of the launch of AMBI's new $200 million film fund. Monika Bacardi and Andrea Iervolino are anchor investors in the fund along with New York based private equity firm Raven Capital Management LLC. The original film was written and directed by Nolan and helped launch his career, earning him the chance to make Insomnia at Warner Bros. The film follows Guy Pearce as a man trying to track down the person who raped and murdered his wife. However, he has a rare form of memory loss, only able to remember the last 15 minutes. The film is especially unique with a narrative that unfolds in two different sequences that eventually connect at the end. From the press release:

Said Iervolino, "'Memento' has been consistently ranked as one of the best films of its decade. People who’ve seen 'Memento' 10 times still feel they need to see it one more time. This is a quality we feel really supports and justifies a remake. The bar is set high thanks to the brilliance or Christopher Nolan, but we wouldn’t want it any other way."

Iervolino added, "Our acquisition of the EMG library reinforced our commitment to build a strong global studio with a strong pipeline of commercial films that can play to a worldwide audience. Bringing a new ‘Memento’ to audiences is an initial example of how we intend to execute this strategy."

No matter what they say, this still doesn't seem like a good idea. Remake one of Christopher Nolan's most unique films? I guess it was 15 years ago. Sure, it's not the most popular of Nolan's movies but it definitely has a following even nowadays. I'm intrigued to see what happens with this remake - mostly who they hire to write and direct, and how it will be different. I can't imagine they'll repeat the exact same intertwining storyline as seen in the original? If they do, then what's the point of the remake? Surely there's some other way to tell a twisted, kind of story-in-reverse like this. Again, it all comes down to who they hire to direct.

In the press release, it also mentions that AMBI took ownership of "other titles" including this list: Begin Again, Cruel Intentions, Donnie Darko, End of Watch, Ides of March, Hit & Run, The Mexican, Parkland, Rush, Sliding Doors, Snitch, Undefeated and The Way Back. What I hope is that this is not a preliminary list of titles they hope to remake/revisit sometime soon, because most of these should be left alone. Donnie Darko - don't touch it, please. Then again, the state of Hollywood these days is pretty dire, and all we're seeing are remakes and reboots and franchises restarts, so why not toss in a few more. Your thoughts?

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  • Have Hope
    What is wrong with people?
  • A committee engaged to waste money and greenlight remakes that have no business being remade...ridiculous
    • son_et_lumiere
      spot on. a committee of morons. this fails all of the slender reasons for a remake. it's not a half-forgotten property or a poorly made mistake, people still rewatch the existing, outstanding film all the time. it's well scripted and well acted and demands repeat viewing. crucially, it's still as good today as when it was first released.
  • borninatrailer
    I fairly sure everyone that thought this was a good idea needs a throat punch.
  • TheOct8pus
    WHAAAAA???? This is a spoof, right?
  • capitandelespacio
    I only hope they make a trilogy as a prequel to Memento.
  • TheOct8pus
    Said Iervolino, "'Memento' has been consistently ranked as one of the best films of its decade. People who’ve seen 'Memento' 10 times still feel they need to see it one more time. " That's why we DON'T need a remake!!! The original is perfect just the way it is!!! "This is a quality we feel really supports and justifies a remake." Fuck you, Iervolino!!
    • son_et_lumiere
      i am half convinced this is a joke. who really watches Memento, Donnie Darko, End of Watch, or Rush and thinks: let's do that again. only a group of creatively bankrupt film rights vultures. proof positive that a committee would churn out a camel when tasked with designing a horse.
      • borninatrailer
        I've always thought that what Memento was missing was more action. Maybe a really elaborate and drawn out action sequence featuring loads of US military hardware that somehow, inexplicably, ends up being painfully boring. Let's cross our fingers and hope that when they pick a director, we get some Baysplosions!
  • W.
    Maybe the people at AMBI all suffer from the same rare form of memory loss that Leonard has and keep forgetting that THIS IS A TERRIBLE IDEA!
    • David Diaz
      Yeah someone needs to tattoo that on everyone of their foreheads!
  • David Diaz
    If this remake happens I will definitely not go see it. I clearly remember going to see this in a little mom and pop theater in Syracuse while I was in university and being completely floored by it. Absolutely love this film. Now if they just want to use the name and tell a completely different story in a similar fashion, then maybe I'd consider it. It would have to look really great though since we are already familiar with the style.
  • Tester
    For fuks sake !!! If this is for real and they announce a Donnie Darko remake, I am going to explode and get medieval on these bitches !!!
    • Justin R
      Please don't jinx it, Donnie Darko is one of my all time favorites, bad enough they're remaking Memento!
    • bumboclot
      Unless they somehow convince Bugs Bunny to star in it.
  • Higgens
    "People who’ve seen 'Memento' 10 times still feel they need to see it one more time. This is a quality we feel really supports and justifies a remake" No, that quality makes it a classic that needs no fucking with.
  • Boomerwithaview
    What's next, a remake of "The Usual Suspects"? come on, no way I would bother to see the remake.
  • Firefly15
    This is just stupid and ridiculous. Instead of remaking the great movies, why not use hindsight and take movies which had really good and interesting premises but were mishandled and try to improve on them instead? There are so many bad movies which can be remade into good ones.
  • bumboclot
    The only one who will enjoy this movie is the guy from Momento who can't remember the first one!
  • DAVIDPD
    MEIN G-D! So they are mining the 00's now?! What a time to be a film fan. Although, I was initially extremely turned off by this announcement, I am now quite interested to see what happens with this project.
  • Mike
    I hope this is all leading to an On Deadly Ground remake.
    • grimjob
      Nice pull!
  • I guess they are totally out of ideas. Cinema as we know it is...doomed. :
    • Have Hope
      Yup.
  • grimjob
    What a unique idea, and will most certainly be lucrative. "supports and justifies a remake."........wow.
  • John M
    Not surprising that they would try to remake such a beloved movie, but this time it just makes no sense at all. Typically a remake allows a filmmaker to present the same story but through a different style and/or point of view. In the case of "Memento", the style is as much the identity of the movie as the story. So I'm curious to see if they replicate the timeline of the original and also the use of both B&W and color. If so, then why bother remaking? If not, then it's not really going to be Memento is it? It's a lose/lose in my view. Having said that, let's remember that one of Nolan's films, "Insomnia", was also a remake (though under very different circumstances).
  • eurogibbon
    A shot-for-shot remake with exactly the same actors would make sense.
    • TheOct8pus
      Haha....like a Memento: version 2?
      • eurogibbon
        Right, and people would be like, "Hey, didn't we see this already?" "Maybe, I can't remember..."
  • ari smulders
    Maybe if you change the character in a isis soldier it could work and it would be pretty actual....
  • cuckoozey
    I wish I could forget I read this news...
  • Ryan
    john G raped and killed one of my favorite movies
  • Eggyweggs
    RIP Hollywood.
  • eurogibbon
    It's a shame there's already a film called Deja Vu, that would be a good title.
  • Cyberdine
    Must be a reboot cause CN would not allow this.
    • grimjob
      Not sure of the details, but I doubt it's his call.
      • Yea I'm pretty sure he doesn't actually own the rights to the movie. Early on in a filmmaker's career, they don't really have that kind of power, and to make the film at all someone has to own the rights to it. The AMBI Pictures company bought the rights to the film, and thus (likely included in some clause in some contract) they can remake it if they want.
        • grimjob
          Pretty much what I figured. Appreciate your reply, been on your site since around 2008 (?). You're practically a celebrity.
  • OfficialJab
    I could have sworn Memento itself was a remake of a japanese film or an adaptation or something, but looked it up and apparently not whatsoever, so I'm wrong. Did anyone else eve hear that or am I having my own memory problems?
  • Jonathan
    They'd save a lot of money if they simply rereleased the original for a new audience. New marketing campaign, newly cut trailer... Just stop remaking great films. Stick to old, outdated movies. The Thing was a decent remake. The Fly was a decent remake. Absolutely nothing about Memento is outdated. Where will this madness stop?
  • theboyd
    Absolutely unnecessary. Some movies are perfect. They do not deserve an ill-thought remake made with the intention of profitability rather than creativity.

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