With the economy in shambles and no end in sight to the Writers Guild strike, Hollywood studios are about to release a string of low-budget movies based on previous Oscar winners. Coming soon to theatres near you:
• Mutiny on The Love Boat (1935). In this updated seafaring tale, cruise ship passengers become ill and hurl invective, among other things, at the captain.
• You Can Take It With You! (1938). Bill and Warren venture into the hereafter.
• How Green Was My Valet (1941). The Incredible Hulk falls on hard times.
• The French Correction (1971). F.S.L. teacher uses Rosetta stone to rap student’s knuckles.
• The Godmother (1972). Glinda gets the Tin Man to whack Dorothy.
• Rocky Gump (1976 and 1994). Shrimping in Philadelphia.
• The Deal-or-No-Deal Hunter (1978). Sore loser stalks game show host.
• Kramer vs. Costanza, et al. (1979). Neighbor sues George, Elaine and whatshisname.
• The Bleating of the Lambs (1991). Test-tube sheep run amok.
• What Happens in Atlanta Stays in Atlanta (1939). Scarlett hooks up with Rhett unbeknownst to the paparazzi.
If you’re wondering why the motion picture industry would stoop so low as to plagiarize its own best pictures, who knows? Maybe they got wind of the writers’ blockbuster-in-progress: Shakespeare in Limbo (1998).
Tom Pallas lives in Edgartown.