I read the other day that Hollywood is set to remake the classic Peter Sellers/Blake Edwards film The Party, with Sacha Baron Cohen playing Sellers’ part. To some people this may sound promising but to me it just sounds horrible. Is Hollywood so creatively bankrupt that they have to remake everything? Why is Sacha resorting to play someone elses character when he is quite adept at creating his own? Has no-one learnt anything from Steve Martin’s abysmal remake of The Pink Panther? Why can’t we just enjoy the originals?
The problem with most remakes these days is that they can never live up to the original. Everyone remembers Sellers’ Clouseau as one of the great screen characters of all time, which means that no matter how good Martin’s version was it would never measure up to Sellers’ brilliance. This can be said about Sellers’ version of The Party’s Hrundi V. Bakshi or Don Adams’ Maxwell Smart, which was remade earlier this year with Steve Carrell. These are characters that were built around the actors who played them and even thinking of someone else filling their shoes is heresay.