For decades television has tried the same old ploy and rarely does it ever stick: turning movies into shows. They don’t always work out. Sometimes the material making the transition seems ripe for invention, while others leave viewers scratching their heads. Beetlejuice. M*A*S*H. 9 to 5. Limitless. Fame. Hannibal. Lethal Weapon. Parenthood. The list literally goes on and on. As often as the argument is made that cinemas are overloaded with nothing but remakes and reboots, the same can be said of the small screen. Now the latest entrant looking to make the jump is 2008’s Vantage Point.
Deadline has the scoop that MBC is developing an adaptation of the film for television. Barry Levy, writer of the movie, and Neil H. Moriz, of the Fast & Furious franchise, are both on board as producers. For those who may forgotten about the big screen version, it centered on an assassination attempt on the president of the United States. What made it compelling is that things unfolded from a Rashomon-like aspect, traversing various points of view of the event. Incorporating eye witness accounts, surveillance footage, as well as on the ground home video. It started Dennis Quaid, Forest Whitaker, Sigourney Weaver and Matthew Fox.
As for the Vantage Point series, this is how it’s described in the above mentioned article:
“In the age of fake news, the truth can seem inadequate at best and skewed at worst. By embracing a multitude of different perspectives – ranging from government operatives to civilian informants to innocent bystanders – viewers will find themselves in the unique position of deciding what actually happened.”
Not to pre-judge too much, but the “fake new” inclusion feels a bit odd. Unless the show is all about untangling webs of misinform and then weaponising it. That seems like routinely serial approach to something like that. Furthermore, having the” audience decide what actually happened” is a bold choice and one tough to fully execute. Are viewers going to have a portal or app they log onto each week and “vote” for how things proceed? What that exactly means seems to be the lynchpin in if a show like this is able to survive. Given that a studio like Sony Television is involved, they at least in theory like what they were pitched.
What about you, dear readers? Does the vague concept of a Vantage Point tv show sound good to you? Do you need for it to be laden with gimmicks to get your attention or do you prefer it merely being a solid procedural. Lastly, do you own a copy of Vantage Point that’s been watched in the last few years? That’s likely to be one of the things in favor of adapting it to a series. If people don’t fully remember the original, the chances of success or making it something uniquely its own skyrocket. With the ball just beginning to roll on this one, we’ll update you, once more news comes to light.