So MGM has stumbled across the classic 80’s teen-film Valley Girl, and decided that what they’ve really needed is a remake. “Gosh, we really need to redo Valley Girl” – is a line that has been said by no one ever, except for MGM execs it seems. Not only are they remaking it, but they’ve decided that the original was missing that certain something – oh, that’s right – it should have been a musical all along.
In the lead roles will be Jessica Rothe (Mary + Jane, La La Land) as valley girl Julie, and Josh Whitehouse (Alleycats) as punk-rocker Randy. Also joining the cast will be Chloe Bennet (Agents of SHIELD) and Logan Paul (Foursome).
Rachel Lee Goldenberg (Man Seeking Woman, Teachers) is directing a script that was originally written by Amy Talkington (whose main prior credit was Avalon High, about a teenage girl discovering that she’s really a reincarnation of King Arthur; no, really) and has since been redone by Jenny Lumet (who is also a relative newcomer, having only written Rachel Getting Married). The film had originally been slated to be directed by Clay Weiner (who is primarily a television commercials director), but it seems something fell through – but he had pulled out all the stops in his quest to land the gig; Deadline had reported at the time:
Weiner was the only one who spent the two-week holiday break putting together a three-minute demo reel, paid for out of his own pocket, that featured choreographed dance routines set to a mash-up of the 1980s tunes that will be sung in the film. He demonstrated the spirit, design, costuming and camera work that reflected his vision for the film.
So, rewrites, replacement directors, and a film that joins the long list of films that doesn’t need to be remade, especially as a musical. The primary demographic of theater goers wouldn’t be able to say where valley girls come from, let alone have any idea about them (the more knowledgable might be able to kick off one or two from the lexicon). But the original film was about a place and a time in America. Doing it again still set in the same place and time, it would appear that they really thought it needed to be dragged up and redone, why exactly; because Nicolas Cage wasn’t the right casting choice originally?