I know, I know, it’s a remake of “Footloose”, why even bother following it? It’s definitely hurting my street cred, that’s for sure. But I can’t help it, the original movie with Kevin Bacon and John Lithgow (about a city kid who moves to a rural town where music is outlawed) is an old favorite of mine, and I still find it very watchable when I run across it on cable TV nowadays. A remake with “Gossip Girl” star Chace Crawford and “Dancing with the Stars'” Julianne Hough is fast approaching, but it looks like they’ll have to do it without director Kenny Ortega.
An old pro with kiddie musicals, Kenny Ortega directed all three highly profitable “High School Musical” movies for Disney, and was poised to make “Footloose” with “elaborately staged musical numbers”. Not so fast, my friends. Paramount Pictures had a different idea, says Variety. Instead of another “High School Musical” (which, from the sounds of it, is what Ortega was going after), the studio wanted an “edgier drama” with way less musical numbers (if they had to have musical numbers at all) and made for about $5 million less. Ortega was looking at a $30 million dollar budget, but Paramount thinks $25 million is more than serviceable.
As a result, Ortega and the remake have parted company, citing the old standard “creative differences”. Ortega will now go on to wait for his Michael Jackson concert movie “This is It” to open, while Paramount goes in search of a director who will do their bidding.
Say what you will about the original, but it was still pretty awesome. For, you know, 1984. I mean, sure, he’s the new kid in town, but the music is, like, on his side.