Friday, July 4, 2008

Originality in Hollywood

There is hardly any originality in Hollywood anymore. Everything is either a sequel, remake, spoof, or adaptation of something else. As proof of this, I am taking the top twenty-five movies of each year for the last 4 years, and color-coding them as to what they are based on. This is just an example of how wildly popular these types of movies are. I'm not saying every movie is based on something else, I'm just merely pointing out the fact that most cinema is not original in any sense of the word.
I know sequels are sort of an unfair thing to label here, but what I'm looking for are complete, stand-alone movies. Oh, and if you don't believe me on any of these, feel free to research it.

Black text = completely original idea
Red text = sequel
Blue text = remake
Green text = adaptation
Purple text = parody (the idea is that they are not based on original concepts, just lame jokes and...well, parodies)
Orange text = uncredited rip-off (but still counted as an original idea in my book)
Some movies will be multiple colors.

1. Shrek 2
2. Spider-Man 2
3. The Passion of the Christ
4. Meet the Fockers ("Meet the Parents" was a remake, interestingly enough)
5. The Incredibles
6. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
7. The Day After Tomorrow (suprisingly, it was inspired by this book)
8. The Bourne Supremacy
9. National Treasure (this one walks the line, but I'll give it an original idea)
10. The Polar Express
11. Shark Tale
12. I, Robot
13. Troy
14. Ocean's Twelve
15. 50 First Dates
16. Van Helsing
17. Farenheit 9/11 (this one is a sort of adaptation, but I'll leave it at original idea)
18. Lemony Snicket's a Series of Unfortunate Events
19. Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
20. The Village (M. Night Shyamalan was nearly sued because the storyline was similar to this book)
21. The Grudge
22. The Aviator
23. Collateral
24. Million Dollar Baby
25. The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Overall for 2004: 7/25 movies are original concepts or ideas. That's 28%.

1. Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
2. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
3. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
4. War of the Worlds
5. King Kong
6. Wedding Crashers
7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
8. Batman Begins (not labeled as a sequel because it has nothing to do with the 90's movies)
9. Madagascar
10. Mr. and Mrs. Smith
11. Hitch
12. The Longest Yard
13. Fantastic Four
14. Chicken Little
15. Robots
16. Walk the Line
17. The Pacifier
18. Fun With Dick and Jane
19. The 40-Year-Old Virgin
20. Flightplan
21. Saw II
22. Brokeback Mountain
23. Monster-In-Law
24. Are We There Yet?
25. Cheaper by the Dozen 2
Overall for 2005: 10/25 movies are original concepts or ideas. That's 40%.

1. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
2. Night at the Museum
3. Cars
4. X-Men: The Last Stand
5. The Da Vinci Code
6. Superman Returns (not a sequel, for the same reason that Batman Begins isn't)
7. Happy Feet
8. Ice Age: The Meltdown
9. Casino Royale
10. The Pursuit of Happyness
11. Over the Hedge
12. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
13. Click
14. Mission: Impossible III
15. The Departed
16. Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
17. The Devil Wears Prada
18. The Break-Up
19. Dreamgirls
20. Scary Movie 4
21. Failure to Launch ("loosely based" on this film)
22. Inside Man
23. Open Season
24. Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause
Charlotte's Web (I'm not going to label this a remake because it is the first live-action representation of this story)
Overall for 2006: 7/25 movies are original concepts or ideas. That's 28%.

1. Spider-Man 3
2. Shrek the Third
3. Transformers
4. Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
5. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6. I Am Legend
7. The Bourne Ultimatum
8. National Treasure: Book of Secrets
Alvin and the Chipmunks
10. 300
11. Ratatouille
12. The Simpsons Movie
13. Wild Hogs
14. Knocked Up
15. Juno
16. Rush Hour 3
17. Live Free or Die Hard
18. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
19. American Gangster
20. Enchanted
21. Bee Movie
22. Superbad
23. I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry (a rip-off of this movie)
24. Hairspray
25. Blades of Glory
Overall for 2007: 8/25 movies are original concepts or ideas. That's 32%.

So if you add up all of these, you come to the conclusion that 32% of the top 100 movies of the last four years are completely original ideas. Pitiful? I think so.

No comments: