Peplow, N (2015) Repurposing old formats for modern audiences: risks and rewards (Blog). The Guardian [ONLINE] Available from http://www.theguardian.com/media-network/2015/apr/07/risk-reward-remake-old-content-new-audience [Accessed on 10/4/2015]
Remakes based on popular old movies or tv shows are a common sight in today’s industries. This is due to “less risky investment that promises high returns and plenty of free PR to boot,” Since the previous film already sets the audience, all the producers need to do is recapture them again for the new show through the PR generated. As we are also kind of recreating a few well-known fairytales world and characters to fit our new story world, it is important to plan how to format them for modern audience.
Certainly, the original tales still have plenty of charms that draw people to them, evidenced by their popularity even till today. Story wise, we tried to make sure that the original antagonist still exists and is unchanged. These are the characters that many people remember from such fairytales and are considered essential to appear as the antagonist instead of suddenly changing them to new nemesis. Just like how “many TV shows and films were dependent on their main star”, fairytales depend on their main characters and main antagonist. In a way, it is nostalgia that brings in the audience. So, if we are trying to attract audience using our own version of fairytale world, we are actually also indirectly employing nostalgia to make people play our game.
I will keep intact the original protagonists and antagonists. However, there will be changes to their character designs to fit modern taste. Firstly, the clothing they are wearing will be similar to what we today, jacket or t-shirt instead of the older fashion. The protagonists, Hansel and Gretel will be more mature and rebellious, in contrast to the original version. They will have piercings or even dyed hair, reflecting common traits of current youth, especially in the UK. These changes are meant to keep the story fresh. The audience we are aiming for are both the fans of original fairytales and current audience who maybe attracted more to our modernised and dark version of fairytale. We need to “focus on the essence of the idea and ensure that the underlying story is still compelling enough to resonate with them.” The plot is still the antagonist kidnapping the protagonist’s family, just that this time we reverse it to make Gretel saving Hansel instead, going against the normal notion of the guy saving the girl.
Aside from that, as we are combining 3 fairytales into one, there are many new story branch outs to explore. We plan to have the Wolf from 3 Little Pigs to work for the Witch and have Red Riding Hood as a rebellion leader against the Witch. The story is more complicated and seems more suitable for today’s audience which is more mature. Adding on the fact we will add in some drugs reference, we are definitely not targeting anyone below 13 year old. Ultimately, what we aim to achieve is make it”relevant enough to today’s audience that even if the original built-in audience doesn’t have any interest in it, it still resonates with the new”.