I can respect, and sometimes even love, the form of exploitation that gives rise to a movie like 1978’s I Spit On Your Grave. (aka Day of the Woman, aka one of CHUD’s Essentials.) But I can’t get behind the more crass form of exploitation that would see a movie’s name tacked onto something new simply to drive ticket sales.
Writer/director/producer Meir Zarchi has sold the remake rights to I Spit On Your Grave to DTV house CineTel. The company plans their new Spit to be a theatrical release, though they’ve got no creative talent lined up yet. Distant female relatives to actors as diverse as Stacey Keach and Wesley Snipes are already deluging the office with headshots.
Though Zarchi has evaded claims of pure exploitation with respect to the original film, which he claims was inspired by aid he gave to a rape victim, he commented to Variety today that “the more the film was attacked, the more money shot into my pocket.” Roger Ebert famously hated the film, and Zarchi loved him for it. Don’t let that begin any discussion of the role of the critic in breaking a film; we know that shit’s way outmoded.
Those dollar signs line up differently today, though. CineTel president and part-time janitor Paul Hertzberg wants to modernize the story, nab an ‘R’ rating and push the shock factor forward. He doesn’t explain how, when a hundred films that followed in the wake of Zarchi’s are already close to remaking the original, that is actually going to work.
Step 1: Rape.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: Profit!