Shhhhhh… Be very quiet and listen closely, and I’m sure you can hear the heads of the producers over at e.TV spinning so fast they may take off like helicopters. The source of their manic excitement? They can finally stop showing Anaconda as their Friday night action movie for the eleventy one gazillionth time and instead replace it with… ANACONDA!
The Hollywood Reporter brings the news that Sony is planning to reboot the cult-classic giant snake thriller with writer Evan Daugherty tapped to provide a script. The original 1997 film starred Jennifer Lopez as a documentary director travelling the Amazon River with her crew (Ice Cube, Eric Stoltz, Jonathan Hyde, Owen Wilson) to make a film about a long-lost indigenous tribe. Along the way, they encounter an off-his-meds Jon Voight as a crazed local hunter who tricks them into believing he can lead them to their tribe, while he’s actually using their resources to hunt down a legendary giant snake. That is until said anaconda starts hunting them instead.
The film is a super cheesy fright fest with iffy CGI for the big snake that really hasn’t held up at all. To paraphrase the film’s infamous tagline, if you can’t breathe, you can’t scream about how dumb it was! But while critics turned up their noses at Anaconda (it got nominated for six Razzies), audiences lapped up the B-movie creature feature thrills. It more than tripled its $45 million production budget worldwide and spawned one theatrical follow-up, two direct-to-video sequels, and a DTV crossover monster movie titled Lake Placid vs. Anaconda in 2015. None of these would come close to the success or longevity of the original (e.TV definitely played a hand in that!), but apparently Sony still wants to revisit the franchise.
Sources indicate that this will not be a remake but rather a “reimagining” of the initial concept, turning a cheap B-movie into a tentpole blockbuster. The studio has reportedly mentioned the 2018 Jason Statham-led The Meg as a comparison. That’s not the worst template to follow as the giant prehistoric shark feature earned over half a billion dollars worldwide, a lot of that thanks to the Chinese box market which the movie went out of its way to appeal to.
As for Daugherty, he first popped onto the scene when he penned 2012’s Snow White and the Huntsman with Kristen Stewart and Chris Hemsworth. He’s since co-written Divergent and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and came up with the original story for the Alicia Vikander-led Tomb Raider movie. There’s no word yet on any timelines for Daugherty’s script.
Last Updated: January 28, 2020