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Go, go, 90s remakes: ‘Now more than ever’ Hollywood demands reboots like upcoming ‘Power Rangers,' expert says

March 20, 2017

"Because the production cost of a film today is very, very high, studios want brands familiar to an audience," professor Stephen Prince said. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

A publicity still from the upcoming 'Power Rangers' movie shows five people dressed in battle-type suits.
"Because the production cost of a film today is very, very high, studios want brands familiar to an audience," professor Stephen Prince said. Photo courtesy of Lionsgate.

The latest adaptation of "Power Rangers" hits U.S. screens on March 24 and there’s talk of a "Matrix" reboot. Coupled with a host of movie and television sequels or remakes like "Independence Day: Resurgence," "Beauty and the Beast," "Fuller House," and "MacGyver," audiences may be left wondering if studio producers have many fresh ideas at all.

Virginia Tech Professor of Cinema Studies Stephen Prince says this is par for the course.

"Now more than ever Hollywood is in the remake business, and it’s not just movies and programs of recent vintage," he said. "It’s anything that sold well in its day and can be made relevant for an audience now."

"Because the production cost of a film today is very, very high, studios want brands familiar to an audience. Hit movies and shows, or cult movies and shows, function as familiar brands. Studios are forever optimistic that such familiarity will be a draw."

About Prince
Prince teaches film history, criticism, and theory in Virginia Tech’s School of Performing Arts. He has authored more than a dozen books on various aspects of cinema and cinema history.

View his bio.

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