Upcoming Remakes Of Shaw Brothers Classics

by Koray on October 25, 2015 · 3 comments in Buddhist Blog

The remake trend is stronger than ever in the film industry, with older films being reworked into more modern interpretations for contemporary audiences. This has been happening for years, with Hollywood studios releasing  remakes of every major horror franchise from the 70’s and 80’s including, HALLOWEEN, FRIDAY THE 13TH, THE HILLS HAVE EYES, POLTERGEIST, and A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, with further upcoming projects including an all-female GHOSTBUSTERS (1984) and a remake of ROADHOUSE (1989) starring MMA champ Ronda Rousey.

One particular remake of a Hong Kong film gained a great deal of accolades and exposure when famous director Martin Scorsese (TAXI DRIVER (1976) ) directed  THE DEPARTED (2006), an academy award winning remake of the seminal HK thriller INFERNAL AFFAIRS (2002).

Hong Kong filmmakers are no strangers to remakes or re-imaginings of past films themselves, with notable examples including Gordon Chan’s 1994 martial arts classic FIST OF LEGEND, which adapted the story and characters of Bruce Lee’s FIST OF FURY (1972), and Tsui Hark’s 90’s wuxia take on King Hu’s DRAGON GATE INN(1967), which was released as NEW DRAGON GATE INN (1992).

In 2011 two major remakes were released when a new version of Ching Siu Tung’s beloved Horror-Romance classic A CHINESE GHOST STORY (1987) was released  under the same name, and  Andrew Lau’s (INFERNAL AFFAIRS) THE GUILLOTINES, based on the 1975 classic FLYING GUILLOTINE, also hit cinemas that same year.

As far back as 2007, a remake of Chang Cheh’s fan-favorite film 5 DEADLY VENOMS (1978) starring Andy Lau and Maggie Q was in development; a project that seemingly never materialized. There are, however, Shaw Bros remakes in the works that will hit screens in the near future.

In 2013, thanks to a two-picture picture deal between The Weinstein Company and Celestial films who owns the Shaw Brothers catalog of films, two Shaw Brothers classics were announced to receive remakes; Sun Chung’s AVENGING EAGLE (1978) and King Hu’s COME DRINK WTH ME (1966).

Originally starring Ti Lung  and Alexander Fu Sheng, THE AVENGING EAGLE is a classic swordplay film  that has gained a large following among genre fans due to its excellent lead performances, well-choreographed action, and engaging story.  This film has already been remade previously as 13 COLD-BLOODED EAGLES (1993),  but how many fans hold that film in high esteem? I wonder if any remake can truly capture the magic of the original? And who can replace Cheng Pei Pei in the iconic role of ‘Golden Swallow’, which she made her own, in COME DRINK WITH ME?

The writer behind the upcoming CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON (2000) sequel GREEN DESTINY (2016) and the Netflix hit-series MARCO POLO, John Fusco, is attached to the Weinstein Company and Celestial collaborations. Mr. Fusco really has his work cut out for him in trying to do justice to the originals.

These are not the only Shaw Bros films that are getting remakes however, as Chinese media conglomerate Tencent recently bought remake right to Chor Yuen’s 1972 wuxia film THE MAGIC BLADE. Celestial pictures is once again onboard, with the film being produced by Tencent’s film branch Tencent Pictures. Actor/director Derek Yee (SHAOLIN PRINCE, 1983) is also attached to direct a 2016, 3D remake of the wuxia film DEATH DUEL (1977), which he starred in, to be released as  THE SWORD MASTER.

Besides the above mentioned projects, RUSH HOUR director Brett Ratner has also expressed interest in a potential remake of Bruce Lee classic ENTER THE DRAGON (1973). With so many remakes slated for release in the near future I can’t help but wonder if these films will avoid the shadow of the classic films they are based on, and manage to stand on their own as quality films.

We would like to know how you, the readers of Shaolin Chamber 36, feel about these remakes of martial arts cinema classic, and if there is a martial arts film that you would like to see get a remake?




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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Joe May 8, 2018

There’s no way anybody can ever replicate Chang cheh as a director, or the Shaw bros. as producers. Where are you ever going to find teams of actors to work together and in rhythm the way fu sheng David Chang and ti lung worked? Acrobats like the venom boys? IMPOSSIBLE to repeat 5 deadly venoms or unbeatable dragon. The choreography was magic. Look at the flicks from the 90s with all the wire fighting. Yes some were great – black mask, iron monkey but most had uninteresting characters where u didn’t care for them or how they wound up. And please don’t even mention redoing enter the dragon, absolute joke


Morris August 19, 2018

Fabulous movie, amazing team


magicdragon November 4, 2015

If any more Shaw Brothers films remade would NOT be a good thing. The Flying Guillotines one was so terrible!!! Please dont do any more remakes right holders!


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