William Friedkin’s 1973 The Exorcist is considered (ironically) holy ground in the field of movies, namely the horror genre. Although movies are so far advanced in makeup, CGI, and other effects, something created in the early 1970s may not seem as spectacular. However, this movie is legendary because it changed everything.
And now, since Hollywood is feeling a pinch in the shorts from COVID-19, they are going to reboot this in 2021.
Think about it: This movie spawned five sequels and prequels, and two TV series. And why don’t you care? Because they all sucked!
There is a reason Hollywood kept going to this barren well since William Peter Blatty gave us his seminal work. You can’t recapture lightning in a bottle. Magic like that is once in a lifetime, even black magic from The Exorcist.
What’s the fascination? Simple. A snaggle-toothed, red-faced devil? That we can handle. It’s expected from characters like that or zombies. In fact, we love it from zombies. But a teenage girl? A possessed innocent girl who ends up doing some of the most frightening things ever seen in movies?
That is the making of a classic movie enshrined in Hollywood forever. Yeah, they’re not that sentimental because money.
Deal With the Devil
The Exorcist is a movie that has made several A-Lists with us, and with others as well.
- Best-ever jump scares (Exorcist III)
- Highest grossing horror movies ($441M on a $12M budget)
- Most essential horror themes (Mike Oldfield’s “Tubular Bells”)
- Even paintings that inspired the movies (René François Ghislain Magritte;s “Empire of Light”)
You get it: The Exorcist is Hollywood royalty. And certain movies just should not be remade. I get sequels and prequels. Do them at your own peril. Most of them rarely work as well as the original. Sometimes, you get a second glimpse at that spark (i.e., Terminator 2, The Empire Strikes Back) but then it fizzles out like a 60-year-old man following date night and his special blue pills (i.e., Anything after Terminator 2).
Yet, Hollywood persists. Even those chicken-ess vultures know certain movies are untouchable. They even lied to all of us about the sanctity of this very film.
Yet, here comes Morgan Creek with a buried report in a Deadline article.
Current Morgan Creek projects include Stay Tuned at AMC, with a planned theatrical reboot of The Exorcist in the works for 2021.Deadline
Rebooting the exorcist: A Cursed Idea
Seriously, the hell are they thinking?! If sequels and prequels don’t work, will a reboot be a success suddenly? I mean, surely CGI can improve on Pazuzu (he was just a woman made ugly (Eileen Dietz) with some sweet makeup and prosthetic teeth), but this movie is untouchable.
At least, it should be, right? Yet, this is Hollywood. Nothing ever is sacred.
The one thing Morgan Creek needs to remember about this particular reboot of The Exorcist was the timing. This was the early 1970s. Demonic possession was unknown and never seen. So, when William Friedkin put Linda Blair up on a movie screen spitting up green pea soup, chaos ensued. People freaked the hell out (literally).
There were mass pickets and petitions. There were conservative coalitions threatening ad boycotts. And yet, this film was sold out for months. Months. And it was still nominated for Hollywood’s highest achievement — 10 Oscar nominations, and it won two of those (Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Sound Mixing).
See for yourself, because rebooting The Exorcist, Hollywood will never see this again:
Ever heard “Leave well enough alone”? I don’t know who “Well Enough” is, but that poor guy needs to call AARP and get an unlisted number. Retirement is nigh and some things just need to stay as they were in Hollywood — classics.