Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Remakes for New National Audiences

In light of Shanti Kumar’s article this week, and the question of “the opposition between the global and the local,” I wondered about American remakes of shows coming out of explicitly different national spaces like The Killing or the potential film adaptations of The Fall (Kumar 140).  In addition to the proliferation of remakes of U.K. and Danish shows (and now Australian shows) for an American audience as producers search for new content, do these adaptations reflect a desire to reappropriate the original shows (reproducing a successful formula) in an American “local” context?  Do producers and show runners change aspects of the original programs to make them more familiar to U.S. viewers?  Or do others who adapt these shows understand their appeal as “global,” and therefore believe they do not need to be reshaped or restructured for a new national audience?  In what ways might the latter assumption be problematic?

It interested me especially that Netflix has just bought the rights to the A&E remake of The Returned, which we’re watching this week.  Does the A&E/Netflix show depict the same style and pace as the French show, or restructure it to fit American “local” TV traditions?

I’m curious, either based on the preview, or for people who might have seen the A&E show…

Does the program seem to reflect the style of the French original we watched for class?  Or to differ formally?  How might this manifest or change with the remake?  Does this suggest the genre is being read in terms of “global” or “local” traditions?

A couple of links:
Preview for The Returned’s A&E remake:

On Netflix’s buy of The Returned’s U.S. remake:

-Allison Ross

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