'NeverEnding Story' Genuinely Not Ending

February 26, 2009

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You know Hollywood doesn't care about your childhood. If they had the technology, and thought it would turn a profit, they would go back in time and make you CGI strangle yourself to death in the womb. You know this, but here's more supporting evidence (thanks, Joshua):

"The NeverEnding Story" might keep going.

Warner Bros. and a pair of top-tier production banners are in the early stages of a reboot of the 1980s children's fantasy classic.

The Kennedy/Marshall Co. ("The Curious Case of Benjamin Button") and Leonard DiCaprio's shingle Appian Way are in discussions with Warners about reviving the 25-year-old franchise with a modern spin. The studio recently acquired rights to the property, clearing the way for a potential remake.

Born out of a German-language novel by Michael Ende, the film centers on a boy named Bastian Balthazar Bux who discovers a parallel world in a book titled "The NeverEnding Story." As the boy, a loner, delves deeper into the book, he increasingly finds his life intertwined with the plot of the novel, in which a hero in the land of Fantasia must save the universe on behalf of an empress.

The new pic -- which original producer Dieter Geissler also will produce and Sarah Schechter and Jesse Ehrman will oversee for Warners -- will examine the more nuanced details of the book that were glossed over in the first pic.

Those familiar with the project emphasize that it is in its early stages and that writers have not been attached.

As one of the many who grew up with dreams of flying on the back of a wise, old, pink dog-thing--who, in retrospect, acts really creepy with kids--I'm not thrilled about this, but let me play devil's (executive producer Leonard DiCaprio's) advocate for a second...

The NeverEnding Story was based on a German book of the same name, and according to the always-accurate Wikipedia page for the film, the author was so displeased with how far it strayed from the source material, he sued:

This film adaptation only covered the first half of the book... The novel's author, Michael Ende, felt that this adaptation's content deviated so far from his book that he requested they either halt production or change the name; when they did neither, he sued them and subsequently lost the case.

With the higher budget and elaborate effects common in modern children's fantasy films, and given a decent writer and director, this could be a better, more faithful adaptation for a new generation of kids that don't realize the wonders and dangers of perpetual tales. Maybe it wouldn't hurt to have an updated version where blue screen work isn't so distractingly apparent. Let's just not mess with the theme too much.

'NeverEnding Story' gets new beginning [THR]

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