News

'Footloose' Remake Dances to Date

by Ray Subers
 

 
June 22, 2010

Paramount Pictures announced this morning that the Footloose remake has completed principal casting and is now scheduled to open April 1, 2011. Following yesterday's Fright Night announcement, this is the second 80s remake to secure a 2011 date in the last two days.

Newcomer Kenny Wormald has been cast in the lead role of Ren, the character Kevin Bacon portrayed in the 1984 original, while Julianne Hough, best known as a two-time Dancing with the Stars champion, will co-star as Ariel, previously played by Lori Singer. By far the biggest name in the cast, though, is Dennis Quaid, who will fill John Lithgow's shoes as Reverend Moore. Craig Brewer (Hustle and Flow, Black Snake Moan) is set to direct the movie from a script he adapted. Footloose is currently scheduled to open against Universal's Hop, which features Russell Brand lending his voice to a CG-animated Easter Bunny.

The original Footloose opened Feb. 17, 1984 to $8.6 million, or the equivalent of around $20 million adjusted for ticket price inflation. The movie ultimately closed with just over $80 million ($189 million adjusted), ranking as the seventh highest-grossing movie of 1984. Despite Footloose's box office numbers and subsequent cultural impact, it's been a struggle in the last few years to get the remake made. Initially, Kenny Ortega was set to direct his High School Musical star Zac Efron, but Efron bowed out early last year. The movie had also originally been scheduled to open this past weekend opposite Toy Story 3, but was indefinitely postponed in January. Finally, Chace Crawford (Gossip Girl), who was brought on to replace Efron, left the project in April. Producers eventually decided to cast an unknown in the lead role, and, after Brewer replaced Ortega, they mounted their search. They ultimately deciding on Wormald, who appeared in the MTV series Dancelife and has recently toured with Justin Timberlake.

Walt Disney Pictures announced another 1980s remake yesterday, adding Fright Night (in 3-D) to Oct. 7, 2011. The horror comedy remake, directed by Craig Gillespie (Lars and the Real Girl, Mr. Woodcock), is set to star Anton Yelchin as a teenager who suspects his neighbor, played by Colin Farrell, is a vampire. Toni Colette and Christopher Mintz-Plasse also star in the movie, which is currently the only new release on its date.

The original Fright Night opened to $6.1 million on Aug. 2, 1985, and ultimately closed at $24.9 million (or the equivalent of around $56 million today). Fright Night II, released four years later, bombed, grossing just under $3 million (around $6 million adjusted).

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