LOS ANGELES (Hollywood Reporter) - Louis Leterrier, the French director behind the Ed Norton version of “The Incredible Hulk” and “Transporter 2,” conquered the worldwide box office during the weekend with “Clash of the Titans.”
Speaking at the movie’s Los Angeles premiere on Wednesday, he explained why he chose to remake “Clash” and expressed reservations about Warner Bros.’ (financially sound) decision to retrofit the movie to 3D in postproduction.
Q. WHY REMAKE “CLASH”?
A. That is a question I asked myself. After “Hulk,” I wanted to do other things, but they came to me and said, “There’s this movie we’ve been trying to do for 12 years. Sam Raimi tried to do it; it’s ‘Clash of the Titans.’” And I said, “Guys, you cannot remake ‘Clash of the Titans.’ I am the biggest fan of ‘Clash of the Titans,’ you are idiots if you remake ‘Clash of the Titans.’ But then I thought about it and said, “If the Greek mythology door isn’t opened now, it will be closed for another 20 years.” “Clash” was an anomaly when it came out. And I love Greek mythology: the monsters, the gods.
And I went back to Warners and said, “Let me see if I can find a way into this that will change the movie enough to stay close to the original but make it more personal.” I am a huge comic book fan. When I see a Spider-Man movie, an Iron Man movie, I don’t want to see an exact copy of the comic book. I want to see a new interpretation. And that is the same with myth.
I found a way in, which was this: In the original, he (Perseus, played by Harry Hamlin) falls in love with the princess. Here, he (Perseus, played by Sam Worthington) deals with the death of his parents, and he has this thing that is unleashed inside him. It was something I could relate to. Because when I was 8, falling in love with a princess and going to fight the Kraken for love didn’t make sense for me. So here, an 8-year-old can relate to a parent dying before their eyes. You would go do anything to make up for that.
Q. SO YOU MADE THIS FOR YOUR INNER 8-YEAR-OLD.
A. Oh, absolutely. Absolutely. And I am happy that people are not saying it’s better or it’s worse than the original one. It’s exactly what I wanted. I didn’t want to draw any comparisons to the original. I didn’t want to make something exactly the same -- sure, Medusa and the Kraken are the same, but in the original, scorpions were almost nothing, Calibos was a big thing but here he is not. I met Harry Hamlin tonight, and I was starstruck.
And yes, it’s for my inner 8-year-old, but it’s for my inner 36-year-old. And my wife ... She said, “Of all your movies, this is the one I relate the most to.”
Q. HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THE 3D CONVERSION? THERE’S BEEN A
LOT OF TALK THAT IT’S NOT UP TO SNUFF.
A. Well, what did you think? Be honest.
Q. WELL, TO ME, IT WAS LIKE WATCHING A VIEW-MASTER.
A. (laughs) It’s funny, that is one of the things I was saying to them. Don’t make it so much like a ViewMaster -- so ... so puffied up. Listen, it was not my intention to do it in 3D; it was not my decision to convert it in 3D. Now, people love 3D. People will go see it in 3D, and it will play in 3D; it’s like a ride.
If you love 3D and the studio is giving you the opportunity to see it in 3D, go see it in 3D. If you don’t like 3D, don’t go see it in 3D.
Conversions, they all look like this. “Alice in Wonderland” looks like this. Remember the technology was not ready, so it’s Warner Bros saying we are giving you the best of what we can do.