Two days ago, Collider wrote up a breathless story about the results of some research they did into the situation with Nicole Kidman's long-in-production remake of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. When compared with the L.A. Times story from March, their report is different only in terms of the severity of the changes that Warner Bros. supposedly ordered up. To back up a bit, for those who haven't been following the story, The Invasion was originally lensed by German director Oliver Hirschbiegel, the much-heralded German director who directed the Hitler film Downfall a few years back. When he turned in his cut of the film in late 2005, Warner Bros. found it lacking in action beats and brought in the Wachowski brothers and their V for Vendetta director James McTeigue to re-work the film. All of that has been known for a while.
Collider is now reporting that their sources say over two-thirds of the film's script -- which probably means every word -- was re-written when the Wachowskis and McTeigue came on board the project. It's starting to sound more and more like the film was made, and then re-made, which doesn't shock me or anything. This kind of thing probably happens more often than it becomes of interest to the blogosphere, but in this case the interest mostly lies in the fact that director Hirschbiegel is by no means a hack. He's not one of those music video or commercial guys who get their 'shot at the big time' and then get tossed to the curb when it becomes painfully clear they don't have the right stuff. Anyone who has seen Downfall knows this guy is an artist. So, are there going to be two wildly different versions of The Invasion in existence? An arty, German-flavored (probably superior) version and an explosion and philosophical gobbledegook-laden version? Enquiring minds want to know.