No IP is safe from the Hollywood machine. Time and time again, our favorite blasts from the past are given modern updates that sometimes work and sometimes don’t. Horror, in particular, has proven to be a popular genre to mine for reboots. It was only a matter of time before they came for our beloved Chucky.
The latest development from the recently announced Child’s Play reboot is actually quite promising, though. According to Collider, Legion’s Aubrey Plaza and Atlanta’s Brian Tyree Henry are in negotiations to star in the killer doll yarn. That’s a pair of talented folks right there, which gives me hope that the project is heading in the right direction.
Lars Klevberg, who directed the upcoming horror movie Polaroid, will direct from a script by Tyler Burton Smith. David Katzenberg and Seth Grahame-Smith, and Aaron Schmidt will serve as executive producers.
The story is believed to follow a group of kids who encounter a technologically-advanced doll that doesn’t want to be played with. The original Chucky is a regular doll that’s possessed by the spirit of a dead serial killer, so the new take is somewhat of a departure from the original mythology.
I tend to be optimistic when it comes to reboots, and I’m all for this one. Give me a doll slaughtering some suckers in gruesome, entertaining ways and I’ll be happy. However, some people believe that the Child’s Play reboot is an unnecessary one. The original saga is still going strong after 30 years. And unlike most horror franchises with multiple sequels, the quality of the films hasn’t suffered over time. In fact — the seventh installment, last year’s Cult of Chucky, received some glowing reviews across the board.
But this reboot shouldn’t interfere with the original franchise. Earlier this year, Bloody Disgusting broke the news that series mainstay Don Mancini was developing a television series with producer David Kirschner. If the show goes ahead, it will be a canonical continuation of the original franchise. And we can be optimistic about that series happening: Mancini confirmed it’s moving forward back in June.
Generally speaking, reboots make more sense after an IP has been dormant for a while. But these days that’s not always the case. Another toy-themed franchise, Puppet Master, received its own reboot recently despite plans for more Full Moon Feature’s movies in the future. This approach can work for Child’s Play as well; both iterations can co-exist as separate entities and us fans can find room in our hearts for both. We need more good movies about homicidal dolls and similar tiny terrors.
That said, pint-sized horror is growing. In addition to Child’s Play and Puppet Master still being all the rage, there’s also a Critters TV series in the works. Titled A New Binge, the series will see the miniature aliens return to Earth and terrorize the citizens of Burbank. The show is also being helmed by Al Kaplan, Jordan Rubin, and Jon Kaplan, who unleashed the glorious Zombeavers on us in 2014. Sign me up for that.
If these projects prove to be successful, maybe we’ll finally get that new Gremlins movie that’s been in the works since forever ago. Alternatively, they might even look into rebooting similar movies that didn’t realize their potential first time around — like Hobgoblins, Ghoulies, and Annabelle. Better yet: maybe they’ll come up with some fresh ideas and give us new tiny icons to celebrate. All I know is that we should be embracing movies about these little rascals, not running from them.