Red Dawn Remake Changes Its Villain
03.16.11 by Ryan
MGM's recent financial crisis left a few of its upcoming slate in the dark, particularly the Red Dawn remake. Shot in 2009, the remake was scheduled to open on November 26 of last year, but, until MGM managed to climb out of debt, the release date was erased in exchange for a date to be determined.
MGM emerged from bankruptcy in December, and immediately set to work on more lucrative projects like James Bond 23 (working title) and Peter Jackson's two-part adaptation of The Hobbit. Once the studio began looking at distributing Red Dawn, however, it became apparent that the villain of the movie would have to be changed entirely.
Director John Milius' 1984 original followed a group of teenagers forced to fight back after the U.S. is invaded by Russia. The remake decided on China as the aggressor, and distributors were uncomfortable with the decision. The LA Times reports that distributors were worried about upsetting China's potentially lucrative market for American movies, so the decision was made to change the invading country to North Korea instead.
With little money to be made with American movies in North Korea, the dialogue is being changed and the Chinese flags and military symbols are being digitally erased. The report claims that there is no way to remove China entirely from the movie, but will place North Korea in a higher role in the movie's U.S. invasion. Red Dawn producer Tripp Vinson said the decision was not an easy one.
We were initially very reluctant to make any changes, but after careful consideration we constructed a way to make a scarier, smarter and more dangerous Red Dawn that we believe improves the movie.
The impact is reportedly limited to an opening sequence that sets up the movie's plot, changing two scenes, and all the digital erasing of the Chinese symbols and replacing them with North Korean ones. Once the changes are made, Red Dawn will get close to receiving its new release date.
Red Dawn was directed by first-time director Dan Bradley and written by Carl Ellsworth (The Last House on the Left). The movie stars Chris Hemsworth, Adrianne Palicki, Josh Hutcherson, and Jeffrey Dean Morgan.