For Some Reason, ‘Cliffhanger’ Is Being Rebooted for a New Generation

By May 30, 2014
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Yesterday already brought us the news that one seemingly dated (though still beloved) property was being rebooted for a new generation, but while the Stargate rehash has original director Roland Emmerich on board, this latest remade feature doesn’t have that to recommend it. Really, it doesn’t have much to recommend it, but it still seems to be happening. Hollywood can be strange.

Deadline reports that super-producer Neal Moritz and StudioCanal are pushing forward (possibly up a mountain) to remake the 1993 Sylvester Stallone-starring feature Cliffhanger. The film is classified as a “re-imagining,” which is Hollywood’s favorite way to say “remake, but now everyone will be using cell phones.”

The film will be scripted by newbie scribe Joe Gazzam, who reportedly was “among a group of screenwriters who pitched their take on a movie that still holds up as a guilty pleasure,” which implies that an actual group of screenwriters were tasked with thinking up new ideas for this film, which sounds both extremely fun and wholly demoralizing. At least Gazzam cooked up something (apparently) fun and fresh, which is why he’s landed the (apparently) hot gig. There’s no word yet on what Gazzam’s film will entail and how it will differ from the original, but we can probably assume it will involve, well, mountains. And crime!

cliffhangerbdcap6_original

Director Renny Harlin’s original film (can we bring back Harlin to direct this one?) saw Stallone’s character as “a traumatized mountain climber forced back into an expedition after a plane crash leaves a lot of stolen cash and bad guys strewn on the Rocky Mountains.” You may remember that Stallone wore minimal clothing in the film, which seems like a hell of a way to catch a cold.

What remakes like this ignore is that it’s not the material that really matters with these types of films, it’s the on-screen talent involved. Back in 1993, no one was going to see “the mountain climbing movie,” they were going to see “the Sylvester Stallone mountain climbing movie.” Who could possibly fill those shoes? Or are we really going to get a new Cliffhanger that aims to be self-serious and action-driven? What’s the point of that?

Or, wait, do you think Sly would come back? Say yes!

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Kate Erbland
Kate Erbland is a staff writer for movie news and reviews at GeekNation. Her work can also be found at Film School Rejects, ScreenCrush, Vanity Fair, The Dissolve, Cosmopolitan, Bustle, amNewYork, New York Daily News, Dame Magazine, Mental Floss, Film.com, MSN Movies, and Boxoffice Magazine. She lives in New York City with two cats, two turtles, one boyfriend, and a frightening number of sensible canvas totes.
  • This is so stupid. Stallone was the only draw for the original. Absolutely no need for a remake.

  • WiseSerpent

    @Ben Pearson: Ben, Hollywood. Hollywood, Ben. Clearly, you two have never met.

    You have a valid point. Flick was made when Stallone’s presence alone was worth risking $7.50 and two hours of your life. I am hard pressed to think of any of the current crop of actors I would watch in this role.