The Los Angeles Times reports that MGM is changing the villains in Red Dawn from Chinese to North Korean in order to maintain access to the country’s lucrative box office.
Dan Bradley directed the remake, which stars Chris Hemsworth, Josh Peck, Josh Hutcherson, Adrianne Palicki, Isabel Lucas, Connor Cruise and Jeffrey Dean Morgan. The studio is currently looking for a distributor to release the film.
The newspaper says the changes will cost less than $1 million and will “involve changing an opening sequence summarizing the story’s fictional backdrop, re-editing two scenes and using digital technology to transform many Chinese symbols to Korean.” They added that it will be impossible to eliminate all references to China in the movie.
“We were initially very reluctant to make any changes,” said producer Tripp Vinson, “But after careful consideration we constructed a way to make a scarier, smarter and more dangerous ‘Red Dawn’ that we believe improves the movie.”
“MGM has been working with the film ‘Red Dawn’s’ director and producers to make the most commercially viable version of the film for audiences worldwide,” said Mike Vollman, executive vice president of worldwide marketing. “We want to ensure the most people possible are able to experience it.”
In Red Dawn, an American city awakens to the surreal sight of foreign paratroopers dropping from the sky – shockingly, the U.S. has been invaded and their hometown is the initial target. Quickly and without warning, the citizens find themselves prisoners and their town under enemy occupation. Determined to fight back, a group of young patriots seek refuge in the surrounding woods, training and reorganizing themselves into a guerilla group of fighters. Taking inspiration from their high school mascot, they call themselves the Wolverines, banding together to protect one another, liberate their town from its captors, and take back their freedom.
MGM recently completed its restructuring with a $500 million line of credit that will go toward developing the 23rd “James Bond” installment and back-to-back “The Hobbit” prequels.
The studio won’t emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection officially for several more months, but once it does, it will work on getting its “Red Dawn” remake into theaters. The film is one of three completed projects and will be released in 2011.
“Red Dawn” focuses on a group of teenagers looking to save their town from an invasion of Chinese and Russian soldiers. It stars Chris Hemsworth, Josh Hutcherson, Adrianne Palicki, Isabel Lucas and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.
As we recently heard, some members of the Chinese press aren’t too happy about the country’s depiction as invaders in the RED DAWN remake.
Turns out they may not have a movie to worry about — the update of the kid-guerrilla classic was originally scheduled for release in November, but as of now it’s nowhere in sight.
No, the studio didn’t flinch after the negative feedback. In truth, there’s not really a studio at the moment — RED DAWN was an MGM production. And MGM’s widely publicized problems means that until the studio stabilizes and/or its existing projects find a new home, the movie is in limbo. As the LA Times claims, “no one knows when the movie will ever be released”.
The 1984 John Milius flick starred Patrick Swayze and Charlie Sheen leading a group of Colorado teens battling an invasion by Russian and Cuban armies. The new version (which has Chinese military as the antagonists) stars Chris “Thor” Hemsworth, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Josh Hutcherson, Isabel Lucas, Adrianne Palicki, Josh Peck and Connor “Son of Tom” Cruise.