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Five Franchises That Need A Reboot

5 min read

As movie fans, we are living in the era of gigantic movie franchises like the MCU, DCEU, or even the Fast Saga, but what about movies that were poised for trilogies that never happened, or series that got worse film after film? I bet everyone has a trilogy they wish could be rebooted. I know I do, so here are five that I hope will get the proper treatment in the future.

The Chronicles of Narnia

I’ve always been a fan C.S. Lewis’ classic novels. The Chronicles of Narnia series has had its first three novels adapted to the big screen though. Although The Lion, The Witch, & The Wardrobe, Prince Caspian, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader were all enjoyable entries the latter film left more to be desired. Introducing the character of Eustace mislead the audience into thinking their would be new adventures. Fans of novels especially know some of the original siblings return later in the series’ final book The Last Battle, but none of that ever happened. A Narnia reboot would be so intriguing to see now because there’s so much more to discover besides the four original siblings, including the entire Narnia mythology. One great way to kick things off would be to adapt the prequel, The Magician’s Nephew.

It’d also be fun to see an adaptation of The Horse and His Boy which happens simultaneously to the events of The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. Alternatively, a revamped continuation of the already set timeline could happen if pursued as it would be exciting to see the original cast return as their characters for The Last Battle. Netflix may have bought the rights but a reboot still seems very uncertain.

Ghost in the Shell

Growing up as an anime fan, the dream was to see live-action versions of all my favorite shows. Sadly, anime adaptations like Dragonball: Evolution crushed any hopes I had. The 2017 adaptation of Ghost in the Shell restored that hope though. The film was visually astonishing and an enticing take on the complex anime series – a controversial opinion as most US audiences found it difficult to enjoy because of the whitewashing of the main character, Major played by Scarlet Johansson. As a fan of Asian cinema, I did find it disappointing to not have an Asian actress to take on the role, yet I was still excited to see Scarlett Johansson in another solo heroine movie as I also enjoyed Lucy. Interestingly enough, I was also intrigued to discover that the majority of Japanese audiences did not find the issue a concern. Hollywood Reporter said it best,

“Audiences in the home of the iconic franchise are mostly impressed with the look of Rupert Sanders’ reimagining of the story and remain unmoved by the whitewashing controversy, but rue the absence of the depth of the source material”

Even the director of the original anime Mamoru Oshii share simular thoughts through an exchange with IGN.

“The Major is a cyborg and her physical form is an entirely assumed one. The name ‘Motoko Kusanagi’ and her current body are not her original name and body, so there is no basis for saying that an Asian actress must portray her.”

Unfortunately the controversy took its toll and the movie was ultimately deemed a flop. Hopefully, a live-action Ghost in the Shell receives another chance as there are many sequels and manga based on the source material.

If they ever do decide to reboot the franchise, I do hope that an Asian actress is cast in the lead role. However, I don’t think it should be a big name in Hollywood, but instead a rising star in Asian cinema outside of the US (just as 2017’s adaption brought prestige with Asian actor-filmmaker Takeshi Kitano of Hana-Bi fame). I think that would be a great option but the underlying question is whether any studio will even give it another chance anytime soon.

National Treasure

National Treasure holds a special place in my heart. The first one still gives me nostalgia because I remember owning the DVD and watching it on repeat. I also remember seeing the second one in theaters with my family. In fact, I still remember walking out after the credits of Book of Secrets craving for another exciting and fun adventure. It’s been more than a decade though, yet still no new entry. Currently, there are rumblings of plans of a third one, but nothing is certain.

As stated by Collider

“Jon Turtletaub‘s National Treasure 3, which attached Bad Boys for Life writer Chris Bremner back in January, that film is still in the scripting process.”

If a reboot National Treasure film is made, it could find an audience with many modern conspiracy theorists, who (long with their theories) have become quite popular in recent years. Should we ever see another one, it’d also be cool to see some international theories explored, and not just some related to American history.

Speed Racer

The 2008 live action adaptation of the classic and iconic animated series, Speed Racer, was a fast-paced thrill ride. I don’t understand why it was received well by audiences. Watching this film is literally like watching a cartoon coming alive in front of our eyes. The Wachowskis’ take on the classic brought was equally zany and stylish, which is a combination that only they are capable of creating. It may not have worked as well in Jupiter Ascending, but that’s a different conversation for another time.

Speed Racer is an immense collision of color that clouds the screen that should leave any cinephile satisfied. The casting was also fantastic. Emile Hirsch and Christina Ricci as Speed and trixie, respectively, were is picture-perfect. While I doubt they could ever be matched in a future adaptation, here’s to hoping Speed Racer makes his way back to the big screen someday.

Ghost Rider

It is difficult to imagine replacing the Nicolas Cage’s phenomenally goofy, yet frightening take on the comic anti-hero Ghost Rider. For someone who enjoyed the first movie and played the tie-in video game on PS2, a sequel seemed like a no-brainer, but I was especially bummed when a third entry wasn’t greenlit. Spirit of Vengeance may not have lived up to the hype, but I think Ghost Rider was an intriguing enough character tp warrant one more story.

While it’s more likely that we’ll get another interpretation in the MCU at some point in the future, all I can do is fan cast the next person to ride The Hell Cycle.

What do you think of my picks for franchises that need a reboot? Think we’ll see a reboot to any of these articles anytime soon? If not, what films do you think deserve reboots? Let us know down below in the comments or on Twitter and don’t forget to download the Kernel App!

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