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‘Ben-Hur’ Remake in the Works

Warner Brothers/MGM

By the end of the 1950’s, the studio system had been rocked by television, and MGM was on the ropes fiscally. They put a lot of stock in 1959’s ‘Ben-Hur,’ which paid off big time. ‘Ben-Hur’ became one of their biggest hits (adjusted for inflation it’s number thirteen on the all time list), and won eleven Oscars. Now that MGM is successful after ‘Skyfall,’ they’re going to return to ‘Ben-Hur’ and remake it.

For those crying blasphemy at the prospect of a remake of a best picture winner, it’s worth noting the 1959 version was a remake itself (of the 1925 silent film ‘Ben-Hur: A Tale Of The Christ’) and MGM tells Deadline that their version tells a completely different story that the 1959 film, though is drawn from the book by Lew Wallace.The question with this new one is: Can you do a chariot race nowadays and have it not be all digital?

The film would come in the wake of a number of biblical films, with Darren Aronofsky‘s ‘Noah‘ leading the charge next year, and with Steven Spielberg and Ridley Scott circling Bible stories and a rumored version of ‘Pontius Pilate’ starring Brad Pitt. Now seems like the right time to remake ‘Ben-Hur’ so we’ll keep you posted as the project comes together.

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