Both CInematical and Arrow in the Head are all in a tizzy over this extremely brief item, in which director David Cronenberg says he has heard that Nicolas Cage would like to assume the role of Seth Brundel in a remake of THEY FLY (1986). Apparently, the fact that Cage recently appeared in an ill-fated remake of a well-loved genre film (THE WICKER MAN) makes the thought of an encore extremely unappealing.
We all know that Hollywood’s penchant for remakes knows no bounds of decency or good taste, so I understand the negative reaction; nevertheless, I am a little bit surprised. After all, a proposed FLY remake has been listed on IMDB for over a year, so the only “news” here is the potential casting of Cage.
One should of course point out that the 1986 film, directed by Cronenberg, with Jeff Goldblum as Brundle, was itself a remake of the 1958 film starring David Hedison. The difference is that the Cronenberg version was a complete re-thinking of the material that stands on its own and pretty much exhausts the potential for what is, honestly, a rather limited premise. As if any proof of this were needed, 20th Century Fox served up the dreadful THE FLY 2 a couple years later – which should have been proof enough to anyone that this idea had completely served its purpose and should be set aside for other endeavors.