When news of the planned Naked Gun reboot first surfaced like Frank Drebin emerging from raw sewage roughly a month ago, we took a quick poll and discovered that there was overwhelmingly negative feeling among you lot regarding the new version. It’s not tough to see why: Leslie Nielsen and the Naked Gun franchise are much-cherished comedy icons and many reboots, especially of comedy series, have proven to be distinctly average. The pressure is on new Drebin Ed Helms and Night At The Museum writers Robert Ben Garant and Thomas Lennon to deliver, and Garant outlined some of his ideas to Crave Online.
With regards to Helms in the lead, Garant seemed clear that they would not be trying to replicate Nielsen’s style. “We’re making it pretty clear that he’s not Leslie Nielsen. Those are just too big of shoes to fill but we’re going to try to do as good as those. Those movies are so funny. They’re so solid.” And as for Frank? There is an idea afoot to have this be an alternate universe version of the bumbling lawman, a la J.J. Abrams’ Star Trek (albeit without the technobabble universe building). “Our take is that Ed Helms is Frank Drebin, no relation,” Garant says. “That’s how he introduces himself.”
The film itself will be styled differently, as it draws from different sources. But Garant and Lennon are very much looking to invoke the Zucker-Abrahams-Zucker gag ratio. “We are trying to reinvent the world because that world was very Dragnet, but we’re trying to fit in 100 jokes a page,” explains Garant. “It’s going to be a lot of fun. We’re very much embracing the style. “Right now we’re calling it Episode IV – A New Hope. That will change, but that’s the working title.” So could it be a requel, a reboot/sequel hybrid? The mind, it boggles.
So, does this do anything to make you embrace the new film? Are you even more worried about it now? Sound off in the usual places…