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Wednesday
May022007

Movie Trends of the 21st Century (1982)

The 1982 book The Omni Future Almanac describes the future of Hollywood.

*Cartoons, westerns, and love stories will still constitute the pre-dominant hits of the twenty-first century.

*Future audiences, unfamiliar with classic films like Citizen Kane, Gone with the Wind, Casablanca, and The Godfather, will see these enduring tales remade with the stars of the future. This will continue a revivalist tradition that has long been in existence in Hollywood and on the Broadway stage.

*Instant classics will be created by increased Hollywood hype and intensive advertising. Aggressive marketing techniques will also be used in the promotion of pay television and home video media.

*Old-time movies - black and white films from the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s - will be electronically colored by computer techniques for a generation unfamiliar with the medium of black and white photography.

*Trends at the theater concession stand may come and go, but popcorn will remain America's favorite movie-going snack.

*Movie studios will continue to become electronic entertainment conglomerates. With their vast financial resources, these will be the only organizations capable of funding the giant spectaculars of the future. The trend is already exemplified by Universal, Paramount, MGM and Warner. Smaller experimental movies, on the other hand, will flourish with the availability of video to independent producers.

*Though the techniques and technologies of movies are certain to change, movies will always be called movies.

Citizen Kane, Gone with the Wind, Casablanca and The Godfather may very well be the only movies in history that haven't been remade. I'd be pleased as punch if they kept it that way. (Oh, and if you could halt production on that remake of The Birds, that'd be awesome.)

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Reader Comments (8)

We could not agree more on the remake thingy. They get it wrong most of the time on remakes, heck look what they did to 'Planet of the Apes.'

Leave well enough alone, yes?

But a lot of Omni's predictions seem spot-on, or am I out of touch with pop culture? (Aargh, that phrase probably shows my age.)

May 6, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterSheriVan

Omni was a fabulous magazine. Good science, great sci-fi, nice humor and fantastic mind puzzles. I grew up on it and still have two issues hanging out and still re-read them.

One article of note from 1980 tagged young senator Al Gore as the great white hope for environmentalisn. Shame it took him 20-odd years to do much and an even bigger shame that he's turned into a carbon-offest buying hypocrite.

May 7, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterArkonbey

Casablanca has been remade, as Barb Wire, starring Pamela Anderson. No, she doen't play the Ilsa-analog role.

May 7, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRich Rostrom

Do not lose sight of the fact that at one time the remakes were better. I would cite the remakes of The Maltese Falcon (1941), Wizard of Oz (1939), Ben Hur (195x), Great Expectations (1946) and possibly Oliver Twist (1948), The Cat and the Canary (1939), His Girl Friday (1940).

Films like Vice-Versa have been remade with that title half a dozen times and more if you include derivatives such as Freaky Friday. Debatable which is the best.

May 10, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterTDK

Some of these seem like easy calls in 1982. Two years into the "Reagan Revolution," it wasn't crazy to predict studios would continue conglomerating. And predicting that b&w films would be colorized was swinging at a softball a year after C. Wilson Markle, who invented the colorization process, had already formed a company to do just that a year earlier. I remember seeing news stories about the process in '83.

I give them credit for predicting cartoons would be big moneymakers in the 21st century -- that shows some real prescience considering the dismal state of animated cinema in 1982. (Of the three films released in the previous year, only THE FOX AND THE HOUND made money. HEAVY METAL made a measly $200k at the box office and AMERICAN POP did even worse!)

But what on earth made them think westerns would be a major genre in the 21st century?

June 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCraven Lovelace

There have still been some decent Westerns in the 21st Century - 3:10 to Yuma stands out in my mind as one of them - 'ol Wash bought the farm in that one as well, but he was a Vet, not a "Leaf in the Wind".

August 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoe

This is the main reason I read www.paleofuture.copm. Amazing posts.

March 7, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterManuela

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