We have a couple rules when it comes to things that need rebooting:
- The original thing has to be dated, either in terms of its humor, messaging or (and there are exceptions to this last one) special effects.
- The reboot has to honor the original, of course, but it also has to break new ground so old fans of the property have a reason to revisit beyond “we liked that thing.”
- When possible, keep as much as the original team together as you can. When this isn’t possible, revitalize the entire cast and crew.
We’re laying out these rules in light of the news that Universal Pictures will be reviving the Shrek universe for a few more movies. Here’s the thing: We love Shrek. It’s a classic, with tons of great quotes and sequences and memorable characters. Here’s the other thing: We’re not so far removed from the original Shrek movies, and those movies are still super darn good.
This means a reboot is in violation of Rule #1 up there—the old Shrek movies aren’t dated—but we’re skeptical, too, that the new Shrek will honor Rules #2 and #3.
Variety reports Universal Pictures is attempting to bring back the original voice actors of Shrek, including Mike Myers, Eddie Murphy and Cameron Diaz, and while that would certainly be welcome, we’d prefer the property to lean all the way into “expanded universe” territory. The idea to co-opt old fairy tales was a super fun one, so we’d prefer to see a reimagining of some of those classic stories, instead of just a retread through the swamp.
No word yet on Universal Pictures and Illumination’s explicit plans for Shrek (it sounds like something that’s still in the planning stages), but we’ll have our eye on this one, no doubt. A suspicious eye, but still.