Today the Hollywood Reporter revealed that plans for a potential new Buffy the Vampire Slayer film are moving forward and that producer Fran Rubel Kuzui is looking to relaunch the franchise…without Joss Whedon.
The man who has become synonymous with Buffy won’t have any hand in the new film. Instead, a new Buffy would likely be a relaunch of the series without including any of the key figures from the series such as Xander, Willow or Angel. In other words, it’s Buffy in name only.
The reason this is even possibly is simple: Kuzui owns the rights to the character. While Whedon may have written it, Kuzui bought the rights back before the first movie, when Whedon was an unknown screenwriter looking for a big break. Kuzui claims the new film would be darker and would take Buffy in a new direction.
That direction would be down. While some are comparing this to J.J. Abrams’ recent Star Trek film, those comparisons are ridiculous. The new Buffy film wouldn’t show the origins story and wouldn’t keep all the characters we know and love. It would essentially be a completely new adventure, only it would be about a vampire slayer named Buffy.
My main problem with this isn’t what most fans are saying, that Whedon not being involved is sacrilege. I simply don’t see the point of this. I realize vampires are very cool right now with Twilight, True Blood and the upcoming CW show The Vampire Diaries, but that doesn’t mean we have to brush off every vampire-related franchise and relaunch it.
Every year the Onion’s AV Club compiles it’s Most Inessential Albums of the Year list, a collection of CDs that aren’t necessarily offensively bad, just completely pointless. That’s how I feel about a new Buffy movie. Buffy was never about vampires or female empowerment or destiny. It was about the genius of Joss Whedon telling an intensely personal story through the lens of this one chosen girl.
A big, blockbuster epic movie with a huge vampire showdown is the exact opposite of what Buffy came to stand for. The show dealt with growing up, friends and family, the struggle of felling overburdened. The only thing Kuzui and company get out of using the name Buffy is all of the recognition that name provides. And unfortunately, without Whedon or any of the other people who made that show special, the name won’t help at all.
-John Kubicek, BuddyTV Senior Writer
Source: Hollywood Reporter
(Image courtesy of UPN)