Little Shop of Horrors remake


Looks like Joseph Gordon-Levitt is developing a remake of Little Shop of Horrors! I wonder what that'll be like...

I'm not quite sure if audiences today will embrace the Motown, doo-wop vibe as much as they did back in the 70s and 80s, but it'll be great to see what they'll do with songs. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is a great actor and he's quite big on singing and theater (I'm reminded of his rendition of 'Make em Laugh' on SNL) and he really evokes the vibe of classic Hollywood.

I sure do hope Audrey II remains a puppet though!


  • Sarah, did you approve this?
  • edited May 2012







    Don't you see what's going on?

    Little Shop of Horrors: The Intended Cut is due for release this October. Finally people will see Little Shop of Horrors as a brilliant musical tragicomedy, the show that beat Dr. Horrible to the punch by over two decades, instead of a silly B-movie parody like Rocky Horror or a wacky 1980s comedy aimed at families wih little kids.

    Or at least that's what would happen if it wasn't for the remake. This remake is such big news that it's going to distract everyone from the Director's Cut, and chances are it'll either be way too silly like the 2003 Broadway production or, even worse, it'll have the happy ending.
  • edited May 2012
    WHY GOD WHY!?!?!?!?!?!

    I'm all for Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Seymour, but why bring in the writer of "Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark", arguably the biggest catastrophe in musical history? Just... Why?

    EDIT: Okay, I over-reacted. It the writer who was brought in to fix Spider-Man.
  • Sarah - are you okay with the Spider-Man writer rewriting your late brother's work?
  • And to make sure we're clear, this isn't the man who gave us the Spider-Man movies. It's the man who gave us the Broadway musical that conquered the box office but received poor reviews.
  • Stay calm everyone. Someone sent out a press release, that's all. It's a long way from there to a movie. We've spoken to the producer (Marc Platt) one time, that's all. I think someone's agent just got a little over zealous. BTW, we don't have a lot of control when it comes to film but I promise you we'll exercise all that we have.

    I'm really happy though, that this is a conversation on Feed Me. It's exactly what I'd hoped for when we developed this site.
  • Yea, stuff like this gets "reported" all the time and then never comes to fruition. It also helps that Roberto Aguire-Sacasa is a very capable and talented writer. As someone pointed out earlier, he was brought in to make sense of the mess that was Spiderman the Musical, not its creator. If someone other than Howard were to write a screenplay to Little Shop of Horrors, in many ways Sacasa would be a natural choice. He definitely understands the tone and zeitgeist of sci-fi stories from his comic book background, and he has also worked on (as far as I know) two musical theatre scripts. Surely if this DOES happen, he will be smart enough to respect the brilliance of his source material.

    My main worry with a possible film remake of this is the almost inevitability of Audrey II being CGI. Blech.
  • As long as they don't rewrite the BRILLIANT script or lyrics, I'd be interested in seeing a remake. Audrey II CGI would suck, but the movie cut enough of the content from the stage version that I'd be ok with a movie that more closely followed the original musical, personally. Especially if it kept the "darker" ending, that could be really fantastic. Hope they get the casting just right, though - that's as important as keeping Audrey II NOT computer generated!! :)
  • Well, if the CGI on Twooie is the best WB can get, it wouldn't be that bad. Remember, this is the same studio who produced the Harry Potter films, and the CG in those movies still hold up brilliantly.
  • I'm honestly okay with Audrey II being CGI. What I'm worried about is the film not taking the story seriously, or even worse, using the 1986 film's ending, further hammering in the idea that this is the way the story is meant to be.

    A well-done remake would be great, but chances are we wont see that.
  • edited May 2012
    Reading this just made me sort of sad. Outside the big chance that they may make a horrible remake of a really good movie, I'm just generally annoyed with Hollywood's lack of trying lately. Why do we keep remaking movies that are actually good instead of maybe taking risks at something new? It seems like such a waste to me personally.

    I've nothing against Gordon-Lewitt and I think he could probably pull off the role. I'm more worried about who'd get cast as Audrey. I can't really see anyone except Ellen Greene as her in a movie version of the story, mostly because I'm a huge fan of hers. And I, too, wouldn't like Audrey II as much as a CGI creature. I'm an animation student, so it's obviously not a general hate against CGI, but I've yet to see CGI placed in a scene as convincingly as the old-fashioned animatronics. And while I don't HATE the new ending, I'd be really a whole lot cooler if they used the original one. As it was meant to be.

    Until we know more I'll continue to assume/pretend this might not happen, though.
  • Here's something someone said on a forum I'm a reluctant part of: "Well, they're most likely writing all new songs for this (one of the Wicked writers is involved) [...] So I doubt anybody is going to be doing a dance-pop version of 'Suddenly, Seymour'."

    Though this person is a huge musical fan, he's wrong in terms of saying the writer; he was the producer, and only helped in terms of the show's structure.

    But Sarah, do you know anything about even the idea of new music being written for the film, or would you only be willing to go along with the movie if only Howard's songs & lyrics are used?
  • I'm actually looking forward to what they hope to do with this. When I watch the '82 film, I'm very aware that it's a movie from the 1980s. Everything from the sets to the cinematography to the editing reminds me of a certain period in time. If they do this new one, I hope they'll be able to give it more of a timeless quality, a feeling of the whimsical 50s that (I think) Howard was trying to convey.

    And let's not forget, the movie is being led by Mr. Gordon-Levitt and his team of writers. At least we can rest knowing that this movie is going to be artistically-driven and not something thought up by a studio for the cheap buck.

    Sarah, you should have a producer, or at least consultant, credit on this thing :)
  • What doomed the 1986 film is that the studio wanted something that would appeal to as wide a demographic as possible, which is why they attempted to morph the film into a family-friendly musical-comedy, when it really belongs as a weird cult film. These kinds of films usually aren't successes intitially because they're hard to market, but eventually they find an audience.

    I think it's really important for this remake to have a director who knows how to balance comedy and drama and will try to maintain the integrity of the story rather than succombing to what will sell.

    I think the two best choices to direct a Little Shop of Horrors remake would be either Edgar Wright, the director of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and Shaun of the Dead, or Joss Whedon, director of Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-Long Blog and creator of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

    Joss Whedon is pretty busy right now so I doubt he'd take on the project, but I have no idea what Edgar Wright is doing.

    Do you guys think Edgar Wright would be a good choice?
  • I thought that in the 1986 film Rick Moranis was too endearing as Seymour, and that's why the focus group didn't like the original ending. Even when Moranis was doing something wicked, like planning to kill the dentist, his pitiful-cute dog eyes make us love him, and we support his every action. Maybe that's why they put that large helmet on him in Spaceballs, so we could stop saying "Aw" and recognize him as the villain, albeit a comedic villain.
    Does anyone else get lured in by Moranis's dog-eyes and feel extreme sympathy?
  • I think you're right, but I don't like the fact that Seymour was made SOOOOO sympathetic. He's made so sympathetic, and in the process made such a push-over, that he becomes more of a witness to the deaths of Orin and Mushnik than the actual perpetrator.
    In the musical, he actively sits and waits for Orin too die, but in the movie, it isn't made clear if he's waiting for Orin to kick the bucket or if he's trying to decide what to do and Orin just happens to die in the meantime. With Mushnik, he says "Go knock on the plant and see what happens" in the musical while in the movie, it isn't made clear if he's willingly backing Mushnik up, doing so subconsciously, or being influenced by a large, green, and hungry outside force. This makes him less responsible for his actions, and makes the unhappy ending less appropriate.
  • I definitively agree about Seymour's sympathetic-ness in the movie. It's one of the things that made me not think twice about the new ending when I first saw it. Seemed only natural that he'd get the girl and save the world because you could argue that the worst thing he did was chop up the Dentist and being a too much of a passive bystander. Especially with Seymour's "Sir?!" right before he's eaten. It pretty much looks like he's regretting backing him towards Audrey II.

    In terms of the remake, I would really like to see Alan Menken be able to write the score for it. I know he didn't get to do that with the first film, so I think it'd be awesome if he did the new one. Not that I don't like the score of the first film, but still. I think his involvement is key, ESPECIALLY if they end up having to write extra songs for it. (Though I hope that's not the case.)
  • edited September 2012
  • Just wanted to share this tidbit: On his episode of Nerdist, when asked if there was anything he wanted to do that he hadn't done yet, Joseph Gordon-Levitt said "I'd love to do a musical, but I haven't found the right one yet."

    That is all.
  • I don't know why I haven't shared this yet, but on April Fools, I published a fake post about Warner Bros. announcing the cast on Little Shop Confessions, and people believed it. It was wonderful. http://littleshopconfessions.tumblr.com/post/46907571499
  • Very funny. I missed it first time around - thanks for my cameo (playing Seymour's sister?)
  • Thanks! And I imagined all the cameos as, mainly, the first costumers to the shop.
  • Haha, just saw this, Justin. I think CeeLo as Audrey 2 is inspired casting, actually! :)
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