Annual Ketchup: The Most Rotten Developments of 2010

A wrap-up of the worst news about new movies this year.

Last week, we brought you the freshest film developments for each month of 2010. This week, we're going to bring you the most rotten ideas, but since some months were more rotten then others, so you still get twelve stories, but this time, they are not limited to strictly one a month. The top twelve Rotten Ideas of 2010 include remakes, sequels, the unnecessary use of 3D, teen idols and plenty of the other elements that continue to annoy movie fans.


FEBRUARY 13: SHARKBOY RETURNING TO 3D AS STRETCH ARMSTRONG

The large and active online female fan audience for The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl in 3-D made 2010 a very big year for Sharkboy himself, Taylor Lautner. In addition to also starring in some silly emo vampire/werewolf franchise, Lautner's name was attached in the last year (and the last part of 2009) to titles like Northern Lights (a Top Gun-ish action movie), Cancun (a hostage thriller) and Abduction (about a young man who discovers he's a "missing person"). The most Rotten Idea however had to be the casting of Sharkboy in Hasbro and Universal's superhero/toy movie Stretch Armstrong. That movie is based upon a toy popular in the 1970s and 1980s that had arms and legs that kids could play tug of war over, basically. Stretch Armstrong will also be a return to 3D for the former Sharkboy star, no doubt with plenty of scenes where his limbs will look like they're right in your face. Lautner had been attached to star in the action figure movie Max Steel, but he eventually dropped out of the project to allow time in his upcoming schedule for Stretch Armstrong, which is scheduled for 2012.


MARCH 5: WHO MADE STEVE GUTTENBERG A STAR? POLICE ACADEMY DID.

This was a big year for Rotten Ideas involving former 1980s movie star Steve Guttenberg. In June, it was revealed that there are plans at Disney for Three Men and a Bride, a third movie in the franchise reuniting Guttenberg with Ted Danson and Tom Selleck. The slightly more Rotten Idea came in March, however, when we learned that New Line Cinema is developing a reboot of the Police Academy franchise. This reboot is Rotten on two levels, as the original movie was actually one of the funniest comedies of the 1980s (making it a bad idea for a remake). And then, Police Academy went on to have five sequels, which were progressively more and more awful. Despite a great start, the franchise is associated today with the trend of over-sequelizing what was great in one movie, until people are just tired of seeing any more. The Police Academy reboot also has the challenge of finding another black comedian who can make "funny" noises with his mouth.


MARCH 12: ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS 3D

One of the biggest stories of 2010 was the inundation of 3D movies, which cost more to attend, but didn't always deliver enough cinematic dazzle to match the higher ticket price. Dozens of movies were announced as 3D projects, and this particularly applied to any franchise that was preparing for its third movie, such as Alvin and the Chipmunks 3D. The initial announcement by 20th Century Fox for the sequel included a release date of December 16, 2011. However, in October, when more information came out, the title had been changed to Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked, and it's no longer necessarily going to be in 3D. However, the sequel, to be directed by Mike Mitchell (Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo, Shrek Forever After), is still an Alvin and the Chipmunks movie, which for many movie fans is Rotten enough.


APRIL 2: HEIDI MONTAG IN 3D

James Cameron may have been able to use 3D in Avatar as something other than a gimmick, but many people behind the 3D projects announced this year appear to be quite comfortable with the trend being just that; a gimmick. Take Heidi Montag, for example (seriously, someone just take her away so I don't have to write about her anymore!). After starring for six seasons in MTV's "reality" show The Hills, Heidi Montag spent much of 2010 talking about her numerous plastic surgery procedures (including a day in November, 2009 where she reportedly had ten procedures at once). One (or rather, two) of the physical alterations that Montag appears to be most ready to exploit however are the volleyballs she now has attached to her torso. Heidi Montag is developing a 3D shark attack beach movie in which she would costar with Dolly Parton (as the town's mayor). Possibly inspired by the release this year of Piranha 3-D, Montag's movie is not the only 3D shark attack movie, however. Just a week after her movie was announced, director David R. Ellis (Snakes on a Plane) revealed his own plans for Shark Night 3D.


JULY 2: BLOODTHIRSTY ZOMBIE KIDS GO TO SCHOOL AND FALL IN LOVE AT VAMPIRE ACADEMY

The publishing and cinematic successes of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight franchise has inspired many similar series (just go check your local bookstore's massive "Young Adult" section). Hollywood is quick to follow, sometimes snapping up the rights to these properties before the first book in a series is even published. There were many of these deals in 2010, but the one I will single out in this year-end Rotten Idea wrap up is Vampire Academy. Richelle Mead's series of books is one of the most popular to follow Twilight, but it's a Rotten Idea because the premise is also one of the silliest and trades upon the elements of Twilight that most get non-Twilight fans all riled up. Vampire Academy is about a school in Montana attended by bloodthirsty zombies who also fall in love with each other and get very angsty about the whole situation.


AUGUST 6: JUSTIN BIEBER AND THE MOST ROTTEN IDEA OF THE YEAR

The week of August 6, 2010 was particularly rotten. What would have otherwise been the most Rotten Idea (also possibly of the year, see the next entry) was overshadowed by a story that sent the commenters into overdrive, resulting in one of the most read and discussed columns of the year. Initially announced as a biopic, the movie that we now know as Justin Bieber: Never Say Never (scheduled for February 11, 2011) now appears to mostly be more of a concert movie starring Bieber and his hair. There really isn't much for me to say here that I didn't already write back in August, or that wasn't already said by you, the fans (or rather, the non-fans), at the time.



AUGUST 6: THE MOST UNNECESSARY REMAKE OF THE YEAR: AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON

The Rotten Idea that was extremely overshadowed by Justin Bieber was Dimension Films' decision to move forward with their plans to remake John Landis' classic horror comedy An American Werewolf in London. The incoming new year will mark the 30th anniversary of the movie which arguably paved the way for every movie or TV show that handled a horror concept with a post-modern, tongue-in-cheek approach (like say, Fright Night and Buffy the Vampire Slayer). Screenwriter Fernley Phillips (The Number 23) was hired by Dimension Films to give Landis' original script a "modern spin." I'm just going to quote myself on this one: "I guess that means that when the werewolf terrorizes London this time around, there will be people standing around with phones recording it for YouTube. Great. How modern."


OCTOBER 15: THE WAY TOO LATE SEQUEL AWARD GOES TO... TOP GUN 2

There is a certain optimal window of opportunity for sequels to be made (if they have to be made at all), but sometimes sequels get made way, way after their due date anyway. Basic Instinct 2 and this year's Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps are two examples. The planned sequel to the 1986 blockbuster hit Top Gun is another. Top Gun is a relic of its age, depicting the type of aerial dogfight training that pilots don't really use these days. Nowadays many pilots sit in a trailer in the USA controlling drone planes on the other side of the planet in scenarios that look to the outside like they're playing a video game. Cinematically, it's not quite the same. The reason for the Top Gun sequel being started at this late point may have to do with the recent downwards spiralling of the careers of both producer Jerry Bruckheimer and its star Tom Cruise. If Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, The Sorcerer's Apprentice and Knight and Day had all been huge hits, this story probably wouldn't have needed to be written.


OCTOBER 22: HOW ABOUT WE NOT DO THE TIME WARP AGAIN?

In the days leading up to the airing of The Rocky Horror Glee Show episode of FOX's Glee, the show's creator started talks with 20th Century Fox about remaking The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The original 1975 rock & roll musical is the holder of many distinctions, from how long it has been playing in theaters around the world, to how its audience transcends generations. The success of The Rocky Horror Picture Show was not immediate, and couldn't have been predicted 35 years ago. Likewise, the chances of a new production recapturing the magic of the first movie and duplicating its success seems unlikely and an obvious Rotten Idea.




NOVEMBER 19: THE YEAR HOLLYWOOD WENT OZ CRAZY

After Disney's Alice in Wonderland brought in over a billion dollars worldwide, Hollywood producers went on a search for similar classic titles that could be "modernized." To match Alice in Wonderland, the obvious factors they searched for were: a classic story, family friendliness and a female heroine. This new trend has led to upcoming movies like Red Riding Hood and a few different Snow White projects. However, the one title that is seeing the most remakes, sequels and "reimaginings" is L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, or more specifically, the original 1939 movie starring Judy Garland as Dorothy Gale. These projects include (but are not limited to) Disney's Oz: The Great and Powerful (directed by Sam Raimi and starring Robert Downey Jr), Universal's adaptation of the stage musical Wicked, the violent stop motion/CGI project Oz Wars and director John Boorman's own animated version. The trend hopefully hit its nadir with the November news that Warner Bros was considering a remake of The Wizard of Oz using the original 1939 script. Although the story was not entirely denied or debunked, Robert Zemeckis was quick to shoot down the idea of him directing the Wizard of Oz remake. Even if the remake never happens (which hopefully, it won't), that it was even (apparently) considered still marks it as one of the year's Most Rotten Ideas.


NOVEMBER 24: BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER WITHOUT JOSS WHEDON

It's been known since 2009 that Fran and Kaz Kazui, the other producers of the original Buffy the Vampire Slayer movie, wanted to reboot the franchise without the assistance of Joss Whedon, the writer/creator most credited with the TV show's success. However, those plans needed a studio to step up and actually help the reboot move along, or otherwise, it would never have a chance of actually happening (thankfully). Warner Bros and Atlas Entertainment (Get Smart, Scooby Doo) did exactly that this year, which led Whedon to come out with his own statement about the idea of Buffy the Vampire Slayer being restarted without his input.




DECEMBER 17: THE WEINSTEINS ARE MINING THE MIRAMAX CATALOG FOR SEQUELS

Producers Harvey and Bob Weinstein established Miramax Films as a "mini major" company that had a reputation for both Academy Awards and helping young "independent" filmmakers get their start. In the following years, Miramax was sold to Disney, the Weinsteins left to start The Weinstein Company, and more recently, Disney sold Miramax to a private holding company. The Weinsteins were not able to recover ownership of Miramax, but they still have plans to work with the Miramax brand, or at least the many famous movies that were released by Miramax during its best days. Specifically, The Weinstein Company and Miramax Films are partnering on an ambitious series of sequels to movies like Bad Santa, Bridget Jones's Diary, Rounders, and Shakespeare in Love. It's possible some of these planned sequels might end up being great movies (especially if the original filmmakers are involved, and/or a sequel makes sense for the story in question). However, the larger story here sounds like movies being "sequelized" more as a way of making extra dough off familiar and beloved titles than because the storytelling process actually demands them. As with Joss Whedon and Buffy, Kevin Smith had his own comments about the idea of Clerks being included in this list of movies to potentially get sequels. Remakes and 3D may have recently come to dominate the "Rotten Idea" field, but needless sequelizing, that's just plain classic. Classically rotten, that is.

And those were the twelve most rotten developments of 2010. Check back next week as the regular Weekly Ketchup returns, hopefully with more fresh than rotten news.


For more Weekly Ketchup columns by Greg Dean Schmitz, check out the WK archive, and you can contact GDS via a RT forum message.

Comments

Yoni G.

Yoni Gottlieb

those are really, really bad ideas, especially effing bieber in 3D

Dec 30 - 11:56 AM

Steve R.

Jared Ashkenaz

F'in Bieber in 3-d is always a bad idea

Dec 30 - 12:20 PM

TheEmeraldGuy

Bradley Bainter

Bah, they could give a shit less when it's going to make hundreds of millions of $$$$$ off of dull-minded fangirls; just look at what happened with Transformers 2 and the Twilight series.

Dec 30 - 01:16 PM

Azrael 725

Landon O'Hara

Bieber in general is a bad idea.

Dec 30 - 02:12 PM

Lumbergh Phucter

Jamie Eakins

I dig that you call Transformers 2 a fangirl movie... CUZ IT IS. Nailed it.

Jan 1 - 09:42 PM

ICantRememberMyNumber

Daniel Wilkinson

Justin Beiber was a rotten idea from the start.

Jan 1 - 12:59 AM

dyl p.

dyl perron

F'in Bieber is gayer in 3D

Jan 2 - 09:13 AM

Steve R.

Jared Ashkenaz

Are we talking about the action of F'ing bieber in 3d? That's what I was going for originally and I can't tell if anyone caught on

Jan 2 - 07:25 PM

Corr

Alexander Sciury

And of course we all know it's probably going to do well because of the large fanbase of girls he has...

Dec 30 - 01:05 PM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

Kinda hoping the parents draw the line..

"What the Fu- SIXTEEN DOLLARS!?! SCREW THIS! I'll buy you the damn dvd. That little shit isn't worth THIS much money! Get in the car!

"But DADDYYYYYY...."

Dec 30 - 01:24 PM

Cassie

cassandra lee

Haha hopefully.

Dec 30 - 06:41 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

LMFAO!!!

Dec 30 - 09:29 PM

rle4lunch

Chad W

On a side note, the RT-Mods have banned and deleted all of Captain Cutler's Burden's posts!!!

Hooray!

Jan 1 - 06:13 PM

doomzdavo

Doomz Davo

Damn. Ima miss that guy. lol

Jan 2 - 02:22 PM

manwithoutfear19

Daniel Raimondi

lol

Jan 5 - 10:08 AM

Citizen Insane

peter van wieren

Justin Bieber.. in 3D?

Do not want. Ever.

Dec 30 - 11:38 PM

The Anticritic

peter gallo

I am sick to death of hearing about Justin. Even on movie web sites you can't escape him. I have nothing against him personally just the people that have to mention him IN EVERY FUCKING THING I READ!!! I hate people on YouTube the most who say something about him to get a thumbs up. Thats the worst part.

Dec 31 - 03:47 PM

the hoeks

Peter Hoekstra

justin beiber is the douche of the year. His comment about him being the Kurt Cobain of this generation really skyrocketed his douche level.

Jan 1 - 07:35 AM

Dean W.

Dean Wirth

He really said that?? Now I have a hate on for him

Jan 1 - 09:28 AM

Steve R.

Jared Ashkenaz

F'in Bieber in 3-d is always a bad idea

Dec 30 - 12:20 PM

TheEmeraldGuy

Bradley Bainter

Bah, they could give a shit less when it's going to make hundreds of millions of $$$$$ off of dull-minded fangirls; just look at what happened with Transformers 2 and the Twilight series.

Dec 30 - 01:16 PM

Azrael 725

Landon O'Hara

Bieber in general is a bad idea.

Dec 30 - 02:12 PM

Lumbergh Phucter

Jamie Eakins

I dig that you call Transformers 2 a fangirl movie... CUZ IT IS. Nailed it.

Jan 1 - 09:42 PM

ICantRememberMyNumber

Daniel Wilkinson

Justin Beiber was a rotten idea from the start.

Jan 1 - 12:59 AM

dyl p.

dyl perron

F'in Bieber is gayer in 3D

Jan 2 - 09:13 AM

Steve R.

Jared Ashkenaz

Are we talking about the action of F'ing bieber in 3d? That's what I was going for originally and I can't tell if anyone caught on

Jan 2 - 07:25 PM

Don't Tase Me Bro

Don't Tase Me Bro

All of this is bad news of course, but the most annoying film news for me this year was hearing the Farrelly's are hellbent on making THE THREE STOOGES anyway, without Sean Penn, Benicio Del Toro and Jim Carey. Even more aggravating is hearing that the premise will place the Stooges in a modern-day setting. Worst. Idea. Ever.

Dec 30 - 12:54 PM

Alexson Philip

Alexson Philipiah

I feel sick reading all of this. :/

Dec 30 - 01:03 PM

Katarina D.

Katarina Docalovich

heck yes.

Dec 30 - 06:38 PM

manwithoutfear19

Daniel Raimondi

so do I

Jan 5 - 10:10 AM

Corr

Alexander Sciury

And of course we all know it's probably going to do well because of the large fanbase of girls he has...

Dec 30 - 01:05 PM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

Kinda hoping the parents draw the line..

"What the Fu- SIXTEEN DOLLARS!?! SCREW THIS! I'll buy you the damn dvd. That little shit isn't worth THIS much money! Get in the car!

"But DADDYYYYYY...."

Dec 30 - 01:24 PM

Cassie

cassandra lee

Haha hopefully.

Dec 30 - 06:41 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

LMFAO!!!

Dec 30 - 09:29 PM

rle4lunch

Chad W

On a side note, the RT-Mods have banned and deleted all of Captain Cutler's Burden's posts!!!

Hooray!

Jan 1 - 06:13 PM

doomzdavo

Doomz Davo

Damn. Ima miss that guy. lol

Jan 2 - 02:22 PM

manwithoutfear19

Daniel Raimondi

lol

Jan 5 - 10:08 AM

TheEmeraldGuy

Bradley Bainter

Bah, they could give a shit less when it's going to make hundreds of millions of $$$$$ off of dull-minded fangirls; just look at what happened with Transformers 2 and the Twilight series.

Dec 30 - 01:16 PM

Azrael 725

Landon O'Hara

Bieber in general is a bad idea.

Dec 30 - 02:12 PM

Lumbergh Phucter

Jamie Eakins

I dig that you call Transformers 2 a fangirl movie... CUZ IT IS. Nailed it.

Jan 1 - 09:42 PM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

It bothers me a little bit that the *least* horrible-sounding idea involves Taylor Lautner.
..I didn't know he was the kid in that 'Shark Boy' film, and at least got a solid chuckle out of googling an image from that movie. Lil' werewolf boy trying to look bad-ass in _Shark_ armor...

Dec 30 - 01:21 PM

Ryan M.

Ryan McGlade

You're saying that a movie version of Stretch Armstrong is the LEAST bad idea?! WHAT???!!!!

Dec 31 - 09:09 AM

Sarah J.

Sarah J

You CLEARLY DON'T KNOW WTF YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT, WHEN IT COMES TO VAMPIRE ACADEMY. Zombie's? Listen sherlock, how about you take the time to read the book and not jump to conclusion and judge the book. The book is way better than Twilight, so stfu about things you don't know about. The series are very well written, it they were so damn bad they wouldn't have sold so damn well.
Vampire Academy Series is a very good series, I recommend it to everyone, and if you have a half a sense you won't listen to this shitty analysis about the books.

Dec 30 - 01:21 PM

Lateralus

Lateralus Grates

How's 7th grade working out? Are you developing well?

Dec 30 - 02:39 PM

Tiffany G.

Tiffany G.

How's being a douchebag working out for you?

Dec 30 - 03:26 PM

Lateralus

Lateralus Grates

In your world steering clear of generic romance novels for young girls is being a douchebag? Then a douchebag am I!

Dec 30 - 03:30 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

I assumed she was talking about the snarky "seventh grade" comment, not your avoidance of the series. Avoid the series all you want!

Dec 30 - 04:01 PM

Tiffany G.

Tiffany G.

yea it was the 7th grade comment :)

Dec 30 - 04:07 PM

Lateralus

Lateralus Grates

This is a young adults series. Young adults = Junior High to High School ages. At least I would certainly hope you aren't any older than that, otherwise... LOFL.

Dec 30 - 04:12 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Even so, it was above and beyond the call of duty to presume the younger end of the age spectrum. If you did believe she was a 7th grader, then what do you as a 27-year-old Nitzsche reader have to gain by being so condescending towards a 13-year-old? It's even more rude if you didn't believe she was a 7th grader and were simply looking to demean her.

Dec 30 - 04:33 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

LOL. Five points!! I mean, for serious. Vampire Academy?...

Dec 30 - 09:34 PM

Shiva the God of Death

Noah F

To all those who think Twilight (and anything else) is specifically for young girls: I am a teenage boy who enjoys Twilight. Both the books and the films (although, the second film is not very good), but at the same time, I enjoy The Godfather, Good Will Hunting, Shawshank Redemption, Star Wars, Schindler's List, All the President's Men and much much more. I enjoy history and Truman Capote novels. I enjoy Led Zeppelin, and I enjoy Nickelback. I enjoy Miley Cyrus and Demi Lovato. I enjoy Disney. I enjoy Metallica, Neil Young, and Goo Goo Dolls. I enjoy Shakespeare, Shakespeare in Love, Saving Private Ryan, and Lawrence of Arabia.
PEOPLE DON'T HAVE TO BE STUCK WITH ONE GENRE IN PARTICULAR. ITS CALLED BEING YOURSELF.
And also, if Twilight wasn't popular and you'd never heard of it, would you hate it? no. You hate it because its so popular. Its not the actual book you hate, its the popularity.
BTW: if they redo Wizard of Oz, they are essentially destroying 71 years of Hollywood magic. They might as well burn some kittens alive. =(

Jan 2 - 11:46 AM

Luvagoo

Tallulah Robinson

Good on you! And amen!

Feb 20 - 04:05 AM

Cormacolinde

Jean-Francois Asselin

The classified ads are better written than Twilight, that's not a huge achievements...

Dec 30 - 05:40 PM

Manuel G.

Manuel Granados

If they make a "snarky comment of the year" recap I want this in the top 10

Dec 30 - 07:08 PM

Ryan M.

Ryan McGlade

And I quote, "The series are very well written, it they were so damn bad they wouldn't have sold so damn well." Therefore, by your logic, fiscal success is the marker of quality. The second "Twilight" film was highly successful at the box office, and also received a 27% on this very website. And I can guarantee you that your beloved knockoff "Vampire Academy" series (to me a seeming low-rent blend of "Twilight" and "Harry Potter", two series which the kids can't seem to live without) will fare no better with critics, and will likely do much worse at the box office. I am by no means a fan of "Twilight" at all. In fact, I find its popularity disgusting. However, I take a major issue with your logic here.

Dec 31 - 09:19 AM

Jeni

Jenny B

All of this is bad. Real bad :(

Dec 30 - 01:22 PM

TombstoneLawDog

Daniel Klein

Kinda hoping the parents draw the line..

"What the Fu- SIXTEEN DOLLARS!?! SCREW THIS! I'll buy you the damn dvd. That little shit isn't worth THIS much money! Get in the car!

"But DADDYYYYYY...."

Dec 30 - 01:24 PM

Cassie

cassandra lee

Haha hopefully.

Dec 30 - 06:41 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

LMFAO!!!

Dec 30 - 09:29 PM

rle4lunch

Chad W

On a side note, the RT-Mods have banned and deleted all of Captain Cutler's Burden's posts!!!

Hooray!

Jan 1 - 06:13 PM

doomzdavo

Doomz Davo

Damn. Ima miss that guy. lol

Jan 2 - 02:22 PM

manwithoutfear19

Daniel Raimondi

lol

Jan 5 - 10:08 AM

David Tanny

David Tanny

Having to sit through the first chipmunk movie was torture enough. Even as a kid I never liked them...thought their voices were irritating.
Justin Beiber will eventually fade into a drug-induced obscurity...living in a rehab somewhere in Florida, all his money being taken by his relatives.

Dec 30 - 01:41 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Please make sure that someone on your staff does some basic research before summing books up. In your July 2, 2010 review of Vampire Academy, you say "And of course, there are bad guy vampires too, and probably a lot of emo angst and teen romance." PROBABLY? Way to be dismissive of something you haven't researched at all.

Sure there's teen romance, since the main characters are - oh - teens, but it's handled VERY differently in Vampire Academy than it was in Twilight. The series is about how the main characters grow up, learn to navigate complex lives, defend each other, and become independent adults. It features proactive heroines who have to go through some pretty heavy life lessons in order to become leaders in their community. Your review makes it sound like they sit around wallowing in angst, which is the furthest thing from the story. VA is an action-adventure hero's quest (in the Joseph Campbell sense of the term), not some mopey milquetoast-fest.

Bloodthirsty? The heroine isn't a vampire. The vampires she lives with aren't obsessed with blood - it's a necessity, not a featured aspect of the world-building. And the zombie comment? Zombies are a whole different genre. Don't tell me you're misunderstanding that one too.

Dec 30 - 01:43 PM

King Crunk

King Crunk

Okay, I am not trying to jump into the ridiculous arguments taking place on this thread about Twilight/Vampire Academy, but I have to jump in and defend Mr. Schmitz's calling the vampires zombies. Zombies are defined as living dead, which is what vampires are in most cases. George Romero is the one who is pretty much given credit for the invention of what people know as the zombie. That said, Romero himself has stated that he based the zombies from Night of the Living Dead off the vampires in Richard Matheson's I Am Legend (the novella, not the horrible film adaptations). So, therefore zombies and vampires are a lot closer than one might intially believe, and referring to a vampireas an undead or a zombie is technically not a false title, as they do fall under that banner. Sorry for breaking out the nerd technicalities here, but it was annoying me : )

Dec 30 - 05:24 PM

greg_dean_schmitz

Greg Dean Schmitz

Thanks, King Crunk. Apparently, the vampires in Vampire Academy are a different variety than in most Vampire Lit. Setting Vampire Academy aside, the general problem that I think a lot of people have with the romanticizing of vampires is the "undead" issue. That's why when I want to be snarky, I call them "bloodthirsty zombies," just to deflate the mystique of vampires a bit. You are absolutely correct in your appraisal of how zombies and vampires are more closely related than some vampire fans might want to admit.

And if people want to see a movie that did for zombies what so many titles now do for vampires... rent "Return of the Living Dead 3" (1993) sometime. It's the touching teen romance story about a guy and his newly turned gothic zombie girlfriend. A story for the ages ! :P

Dec 31 - 12:59 AM

King Crunk

King Crunk

I think I have actually seen that movie! lol

Dec 31 - 02:12 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Somehow I missed this comment on my last pass...While Romero may have had his agenda when creating his own work, the vampire and zombie genres have diverged substantially since. In addition to the differences between the creatures themselves, the focus of the authors that write about them are usually very opposite. In most vampire tales, it's more common for the story to revolve around the vampires - their world, their societies, etc. They're typically portrayed as being quite intelligent. The rules of the vampire world are often juxtaposed against the rules of the human world. Zombie tales (unless written by the likes of Mark Henry, who's trying to turn the genre on its head) have much more in common with disaster movies - they're usually about the humans in the story, and how stressful situations (like being chased down by mindless, roaming, formerly-human creatures of the night) can bring out those extreme reactions and emotions that authors love to delve into. (The new TNT series "Walking Dead" is a good example.) @ Greg - if your goal was to avoid the "attraction to the undead is icky" factor, then replacing vampires with zombies was an odd choice. I'm all for taking some of the mystique out of the current fascination with vampires, and I'm usually all for snark, but in this case - well - again - odd choice.

Dec 31 - 04:24 AM

King Crunk

King Crunk

True, and I am not trying to argue here, I was merely saying that his calling vampires as a whole zombies is not a false statement.

Dec 31 - 02:27 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

As a fan of supernatural fiction long before the current craze I'm actually going to have to support Anne on this one calling vampires zombies is as incorrect as calling mommies people. Aside from the drinking of blood vampires have unique powers and limitations that separate them from run of the mill walking dead. They also in general function at a higher level than zombies. Just because you don't agree with the girls taste doesn't mean she doesn't know of which she speaks. Imagine how pisses the geek masses would be if a teen magazine had made such a flippant comment about The Dark Knight Returns without having read it.

Dec 31 - 04:02 PM

Bigbrother

Big Brother

Monkies not mommies. Adam autospell.

Dec 31 - 04:05 PM

Patrick

Patrick Wagner

When I, and many others hear "zombie," I think there is the sense of mindlessness, with only the simple brain functions to do things like eat and survive. Not defending any side on the issue, just saying why I don't think zombie fits vampire.

Dec 31 - 05:24 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

"grow up"... "become... adults"... This series IS about vampires, right? Or does it follow the ridiculous precedent Twilight set on taking liberties? Here the vampires don't glimmer in the light, they age. Good stuff.

Dec 30 - 09:41 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

The VA world is based on traditional Romanian myths that describe different races of vampires. (Richelle Mead has riffed on the myths a bit, but in interesting ways.) One race is portrayed in the books as being living and mortal - while they still need blood to survive, they age, they can have children, etc. Things like sunlight and silver negatively affect them, but aren't deadly. The other race of vampires is much more like the Dracula version - they are undead, they don't age, they're immortal, and they're vicious. They're extremely strong and dangerous. In the VA world, the Strigoi (the undead) hunt the Moroi (the living). Protecting the Moroi are the Dhampirs, who are half-human bodyguards. The POV heroine and her main love interest are Dhampirs. So yes, they age. They grow up. They change. The other, non-POV heroine is a Moroi, so she ages and changes too. The character development that ensues makes for a much more compelling read.

Dec 31 - 04:39 AM

Tammy B.

Tammy B

Most I agree with, But not with you bashing Vampire Academy, is is a well written series, that has a lot of plot and character development. Twilight I enjoyed, but Vampire Academy is written a lot better then Twilight. It is going strong, and is nothing like Twilight, where do you get Zombies from? Did you even read the books...? And no one is blood hungry, so i suggest that you go back to your little storage closet in the basement, and actually read this book and re write your thoughts. And we all know you will be one of the first in line to see Justin Biebers movie!!

Dec 30 - 01:43 PM

Matanuki

Matanuki .

What you KNOW is that no one here will be in line to see that Bieber drivel, so why diminish your argument by making such a silly remark? Jesus, why is everybody here talking about another tired ass vampire series anyway? Time for me to hit the old dusty trail...

Dec 30 - 09:48 PM

Shadowkissed

Lily Ozera

To be honest I'm quite disappointed with this... I would expect one would have completed some research rather than reading the back cover of a book... Quite insulted by how ignorant and ill-informed some of the points made were.

1. The publishing and cinematic successes of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight franchise has inspired many similar series.

True but not in this case, Vampire Academy was well underway by the time Twilight became the absurd phenomenon it is today.

2. Hollywood is quick to follow, sometimes snapping up the rights to these properties before the first book in a series is even published.

Once again true but not in this case. There are in total six Vampire Academy books, of which five were available before the rights to the movie were optioned.

3.Vampire Academy is about a school in Montana attended by bloodthirsty zombies who also fall in love with each other and get very angsty about the whole situation.

Funny funny, hahaha, summarizing a blurb on the back of a book you have never read. Perhaps you should read the book instead of making assumptions you know nothing about. This book is significantly more Buffy the Vampire than Twilight, which you would have known if you had done more than the bare basics of research.

You folk all think after Twilight you can slate all Vampires that came after it just because of all the fan girls and crap that came with it like some sort of joke... grow up.

Dec 30 - 01:43 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Great point about the stereotyping of books in the vampire genre, Lily - there's a huge diversity of plots and characters out there! Really, the only significant thing VA has in common with Twilight is the presence of vampires. They're completely different types of stories! Thanks for bringing some perspective!

Dec 30 - 02:05 PM

Travis L.

Travis Leer

This is to all of the people who are saying that we should read the book before criticizing the movie; If I have to read a book to understand a movie, that movie is a failure. Plain and simple.

Dec 30 - 02:01 PM

This comment has been removed.

Travis L.

Travis Leer

The author of the article is hardly being strict. Read his word choice and you tell me if you truly believe he is serious or not.

Dec 30 - 02:07 PM

Shadowkissed

Lily Ozera

I never said anything about having to read the book to understand the movie, there is no movie yet so how could you watch it? Perhaps you should read what is actually said.

This person is making comments on assumptions about something they don't know about, that is what I object to.

Dec 30 - 02:07 PM

Tammy B.

Tammy B

Yes we are telling the publisher of this article, to read the book, cause he seems to know what he is talking about, what he said about VA is all wrong except that they are teens, who do experience love, and there are vampires, but thats it, He does not have a clue what the story is about!

Dec 30 - 02:13 PM

David Tanny

David Tanny

Do we really care what it's about? More creepy dead people romance...
Twilight was bad enough. We don't more of this Gothic romance garbage.

Dec 30 - 03:14 PM

Tiffany G.

Tiffany G.

It isn't "Gothic Romance" Hell Romance isn't even the main part of the story it's action packed.. and it's got friendship.. the romance isn't the sappy frickle crap like twilight..

Dec 30 - 03:21 PM

David Tanny

David Tanny

I guess I'll see for myself when the trailers come out...

Dec 30 - 03:24 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Exactly, Lily. The reviewer was trying to say why he thought that the books would make a bad movie, when he obviously hadn't even read the books - or even a decent summary. Forget about having the books wrong - he had the PREMISE wrong. These books would make great movies!

Dec 30 - 02:15 PM

Tammy B.

Tammy B

Going to throw this out there, now if you want to compare anything to Twilight, it is Vampire Diaries...but oh wait, that was written before Twilight, so the bottom line is, Twilight is the one that copied everyone..

Okay, had to throw it in.
So what if Vampire Academy is made into a movie, there are a lot of Vampire movies out there where humans love Vampires, It is a popular subject, and will always be a movie made about them, it is never going to die. But these books are a different plotline, and really in the whole series, you meet maybe 3 humans, so not the same!

Dec 30 - 06:17 PM

JettaJameson

James Lowell

Twilight and The Vampire Diaries are nothing alike. Though they do share a few similarities, they are vastly different. Twilight is slow, sappy, and melodramatic, while TVD is action packed and driven by well crafted plot twists. There's a reason it's on all sorts of "Best of 2010" lists.

Dec 31 - 08:01 PM

This comment has been removed.

Travis L.

Travis Leer

The author of the article is hardly being strict. Read his word choice and you tell me if you truly believe he is serious or not.

Dec 30 - 02:07 PM

Anne H.

Anne Hill

Great point about the stereotyping of books in the vampire genre, Lily - there's a huge diversity of plots and characters out there! Really, the only significant thing VA has in common with Twilight is the presence of vampires. They're completely different types of stories! Thanks for bringing some perspective!

Dec 30 - 02:05 PM

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