The film giants hold the rights to the original festive classic
It was announced this week that, after more than 60 years since its original release, a sequel to the beloved Christmas film It's A Wonderful Life was in the works. This looked to be the case, until Paramount stepped in and said that they will do whatever is in their powers to prevent a follow-up to the 1946 film from happening.
The 1946 classic is loved by generations
Paramount own the full rights to the classic festive tale and on Wednesday, 20 November, the studio released a statement saying that they have no intentions of selling the rights to the film, adding that no sequel can be made without permission from them. According to Entertainment Weekly, the studio said in their statement that no one has enquired into purchasing the rights to the film, adding that they would probably get turned down it they tried.
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The festive movie is set to get a sequel...60 years later.
Treasured 1940s Christmas movie It's A Wonderful Life apparently has a sequel in the works, set to be released nearly 60 years after the original 1946 film. Described as "one of the most beloved films ever made" by our own Christopher Null, the movie has earned its place as one of the most cherished festive films that spans generations.
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Okay kids, if you don't have a TV, It's a Wonderful Life tells us about George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart), who lives and loves his small town of Bedford Falls so much he'd die for it. And sure enough, when his tiny Building & Loan (aka bank) starts to fail -- thanks to the malicious influence of the local tycoon (Lionel Barrymore) -- George heads for his local bridge to end it all.
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The joy nearly leaps off the screen and begs you to join. In a charming introduction, family patriarch Grandpa Vanderhof (Lionel Barrymore, on crutches due to arthritis) meets a mousy accountant named Poppins (the appropriately named Donald Meek), a dreamer who'd rather make toys than punch meaningless numbers all day. With a simple tease of what could be, Vanderhof convinces his newfound friend to toss it all away and live with his family. And poof, as Poppins says, "the die is cast."
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A classic John Ford film (and one of the last black and white westerns to be made), Wayne and Stewart make a great Odd Couple in the podunk town of Shinbone. Unfortunately, the middle of the film sags under the overly patriotic history lessons we are given when Stewart takes it upon himself to teach the locals how to read and write. The ensuing fight for statehood isn't much better, except when Valance comes a-knockin'.
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Rope is a complex and dazzlingly unique picture. Subversively based on the Leopold and Loeb murder case, it presents us with two boys (Dall and Granger) who have been taught by their old headmaster (Stewart) in the Nietzchian philosophies of the Superman and the unimportance of the lives of simpler people. Dall masterminds a plot and Granger follows as his half-willing pull-toy; together they strangle a mutual friend, dump his body in a chest, and throw a party for his father -- serving a buffet from his makeshift casket.
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The master craftsmanship on display (placing virtually the entire film within the confines of the apartment of hobbled photographer L.B. Jeffries -- the inimitable James Stewart -- referred to as "J.B. Jeffries" on the back of the DVD case) has few parallels in modern cinema. The story by John Michael Hayes is one of Hitch's simplest yet most gripping: Jeffries spies the cleanup of a supposed murder across the way from his Manhattan apartment -- a sinister Raymond Burr cleaning knives and whatnot. He tells his girlfriend (Grace Kelly) and she laughs. His nurse (the unforgettable Thelma Ritter) mocks him also, urging him to marry instead of peeping out the window at strangers. But slowly, the truth is revealed, and even his most ardent naysayers join in the plot to uncover the reality of what happened in the apartment across the way. By the end of the picture, Kelly is prepared to break into Burr's apartment via fire escape because she's certain of what has happened inside.
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