Movie remakes in the entertainment industry are nothing new. Hollywood seems to love visiting the past – maybe because they’ve ran out of fresh ideas or to cash in on the nostalgia. Some of these movies flopped hard and fizzled out of our memories, and then there are some that were so good that many people forgot (or don’t know at all) that it was a remake. Want to know more? Then keep scrolling to learn about the five classic gems that unintentionally eclipsed their originals.
1. The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Everyone knows of the 1939 musical where a young girl and her dog from Kansas gets swept off to a magical world by a tornado. But you might also be one of the many people who never heard of the original. You know, the 1925 silent picture based on L. Frank Baum’s novel? Or the other four cinematic adaptations that go all the way back to 1910? If your answer is no then don’t feel bad. It’s probably because there wasn’t a single grand musical number to sing along to. The 1939 version is everyone’s favorite for a reason after all.
2. The Ten Commandments (1956)
If you’re a fan of director Cecil B. DeMille, then you’re most likely familiar with some of his most popular works such as Cleopatra and The Ten Commandments. But did you there’s a 1923 silent film version? Not many people do. Apparently, this one tells the story of the Book of Exodus alongside a modern-day tale about a family. It was good, but pales in comparison to the 1956 version, which was a worldwide success. The film received seven Academy Awards nominations and is listed as the second highest grossing biblical film of all time, beat by Passion of the Christ, many decades later.
3. The Thing (1982)
Believe it or not, it took some time for John Carpenter’s “The Thing” to become the cult classic it is today. It was a box office failure, earning $19.6 million off a $15 million budget and received some not-so-favorable criticism. But there was an older and much more successful version from 1951 titled “The Thing from Another World,” which was actually adapted from the 1938 novella “Who Goes There?” But despite the original’s better reception, John Carpenter’s version managed to stand the test of time, becoming one of the most influential horror movies of the ‘80s.
4. Scarface (1983)
One of Al Pacino’s greatest performances of all times is a remake of an even older film based on a slightly older novel, both of the same name. The 1932 adaptation is considered to be an absolute classic in its own right with an 86% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. However, it is very clear that the 1983 version is in a league of its own, with a whopping rating of 93%. Although both movies are based on the 1929 novel, the main differences include the cities (Chicago vs. Miami) and the nationalities (Italian vs. Cuban).
5. Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1986)
It’s easy to understand why most moviegoers wouldn’t even realize that Dirty Rotten Scoundrels and Bedtime Story are pretty much the same movie. After all, they both center around two con artists who prey on women for their riches and fortune. Bedtime Story precedes Dirty Rotten Scoundrels by 22 years with Marlon Brando and David Niven as the cunning duo instead of Michael Caine and Steve Martin. Even the original far exceeds the 2019 gender-swapped version titled “The Hustle” with Anne Hathaway and Rebel Wilson doing the conning instead.
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