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The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

The Student News Site of Northern Illinois University

Northern Star

Stop releasing live-action remakes

(Courtesy of Getty Images)
Four people watch a movie with disappointed expressions. Senior Opinion Columnist Emily Beebe believes live-action remakes are not up to par with animated classics. (Courtesy of Getty Images)

Live-action remakes have taken over theaters in recent years with movies such as “The Lion King,” “The Little Mermaid” and “Aladdin.” Although live-action films can be fun to watch, the overabundance of them needs to end. 

Filmmakers should be able to come up with original content instead of remaking animated movies. With the disappearance of original content, the lack of creativity in the film industry is disheartening. 

Kendall Vasquez, a senior psychology major, said the increasing number of live-action remakes is affecting her perception of the film industry’s quality.

“The influx of sequels, live-action films, series adaptations and remastered editions of movies and shows often spread the core story too thin,” Vasquez said. “It creates an essence that the producers are more concerned with reaching the box office rather than creating a compelling story, and the overuse of remakes do not allow for the introduction of new stories. Consistently rereleasing the same stories rather than creating new ones has resulted in an overall lack of creativity, passion and effort in the film and media industries.”

From the enchanting, floating house in “Up” to the dazzling marine life in “Finding Nemo,” animation effortlessly brings dreams to life in a way live-action can struggle to match. 

Randy Caspersen, associate professor of media studies at NIU, said trying to re-enact certain story components in live-action films is more difficult than it would be in animated films.

“For example, in this film that came out last year that’s called ‘Seeing Red,’ the girl turns into an animal,” Caspersen said. “Doing that in a live-action is much harder, and for it to be convincing – and the plasticity of animation lets you go to so many more places.” 

Audiences are getting tired of seeing their favorite movies be remade into live action ones. Producers seem more concerned about making money off of the live-action movie than making money on a newer, fresher movie.

One 2023 poll found that a little less than 40% of respondents want Disney to focus on telling new stories instead of creating remakes. An additional 20% of respondents want Disney to remake classic films and nearly 30% of respondents want Disney to do a little of both, according to NewsWeek

Will Sitton, a senior marketing major, said he strongly dislikes remakes of movies.

“Remakes to me are cheap and rarely improve the quality of the film. It’s often just a money grab,” Sitton said. “Further, I prefer a well-done animated movie over an after-thought live-action version of it. To me, Shrek is a classic childhood staple. If they came out with a live-action version of, say, John Travolta painted green, I would find it extremely corny and not watch it.”

Filmmakers need to be more creative and stop remaking movies. The classic movies are better than live-actions and should be kept as animations. 

The live-action of “The Little Mermaid” made $567.51 million in theaters. However, in order to break even, the movie needed to make $560 million, according to The Direct

Although filmmakers made a little profit, it wasn’t much. Some live-actions such as “The Little Mermaid” seem to not be as successful as animated films. Filmmakers should be concerned about making a profit. This is a sign that originals should be kept the way they were intended to be instead of getting remade into live-actions.

As the credits roll and the screen fades to black, the current state of cinema should be re-evaluated to reduce the number of live-action films being produced. Animated films are just as, if not more, important than live-action films and should get the recognition they deserve.

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