The generation of rebooting classic film and TV franchises is in full swing. Shows such as "Raven's Home," "Fuller House," and "Teen Titans Go!" have hit the screens, inspiring both nostalgia and dread from students and faculty. 

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The forces that drive these revivals are often commercially motivated, said John Petty, UT-Dallas film lecturer.

“Reboots, sequels, remakes, things like this, they have a built-in audience already,” Petty said. “And they have built-in name recognition, so they’re very low risk for movie studios, who at this point are very, very risk averse.”

Petty said high levels of involvement by the corporations that fund Hollywood blockbusters may occasionally stifle the artistic integrity of the industry.

“As things have gone on and we’ve gotten more into this era of conglomeration, the studios tend to be run by lawyers and accountants and people who don’t know the film industry,” Petty said. “So, they don’t have the same instincts that Jack Warner or Carl Laemmle would have. They have to go on data, and data for a new project is very hard to come by.”

There is typically a heavy presence of nostalgia motivating many rebooted titles, Petty said.

“With nostalgia, you have to look at the 30 year rule,” Petty said. “Something that is popular now will be popular again in about 30 years because the kids who enjoyed it initially, 30 years later they are going to have disposable income to spend on it.”

Production companies changing genres and taking creative liberties can often revitalize classic franchises for younger generations. Now, they are figuring out ways to refocus these things and turn them into something they’ve never been before to appeal to a larger audience, Petty said.

Being inspired by an iconic story and creating an original angle takes creativity, said Daniel Garcia, UT Arlington assistant professor of film. But Garcia said there is a fine line between being inspired by a classic work and having an unoriginal product.

“There is a moment in which borrowing is just stealing,” Garcia said. “You are writing the emotional drive that, that piece was meant to be for something else.”

Mason Chavez, Coordinated Admissions Program freshman, has mixed feelings about Hollywood reboots and is bothered by most sequels, he said.

“I can’t say that all sequels bother me, because I am excited about ‘Raven’s Home,’ the sequel to ‘That’s So Raven,’” Chavez said. “I think that was a really good reboot.”

However, Chavez is bothered by shows such as “Fuller House” and feels the atmosphere of the source material has compromised, he said.

“I don’t know if they want to try and relive the glory days, and reliving the glory days is never a positive thing,” Chavez said.

Deviating from the source material when rebooting classics can be dangerous, nursing freshman Patricia Portillo said. If a reproduction takes too much from what the story was intended to be, it can ruin it overall, she said.

For CAP freshman Tyler Barnes, changes in the story and animation styles can be off-putting. When people like something as a kid, any variation of it won’t be the same, Barnes said.

Viewers unaware of the source material are in the clear, Barnes said.

“I think people nowadays though, if they watch the rebooted version and haven’t watched the original, they wouldn’t even have a problem with it,” Barnes said. “It really just depends on who you ask.”


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