I don’t think anyone got that up in arms about a remake of 3:10 to Yuma because the original wasn’t a hardcore classic (although any movie ages enough and someone will argue for its inclusion in the canon). You can’t say that about High Noon, a movie that is considered one of the best mainstream Westerns in history. Told in nearly real time, High Noon is where 3:10 really sprang: Gary Cooper is Will Kane, a sheriff who is getting ready to retire. Kane learns that crazy outlaw Frank Miller, who he once sent to the gallows, has been pardoned and is coming into town on the noon train seeking revenge. Kane’s about to leave town but decides that he has to confront Miller, and he tries to recruit allies, but no one in the town wants to help. It’s a classic American story of a man going it alone for the sake of honor and duty, the sort of thing that makes you feel pretty ashamed to spend a third of your life on the couch watching TV.
The remake rights to High Noon were picked up at the American Film Market by producer Mark Headley, actor Christopher Mitchum and their business partner, Toni Covington. High Noon was remade as a TV movie in 2000, and Outland is essentially a scifi version of the story, but this could be the worst one yet. Mitchum is the son of actor Robert Mitchum and himself the star of films like Magic Kid and Lycanthrope. Headley, meanwhile, has produced gems like Dr. Chopper, Dr. Rage, Animal Attraction III and Nudist Colony of the Dead. This could be their play for respectability, but I wonder what lessons working together on the Miles O’Keefe starrer Diamondbacks taught them?
The plan is to have High Noon go in front of cameras at the beginning of the year. Unless they’re using the original script, the strike may thankfully keep that from happening.