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Hollywood Is Remaking a Clint Eastwood Western Classic: Report

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A movie that launched a legendary Hollywood career and effectively popularized the spaghetti Western genre is looking to make a comeback.

The seminal 1960s film “A Fistful of Dollars,” which starred the inimitable Clint Eastwood, will be looking to capture the attention of a new generation (perhaps quite literally) of film fans through a forthcoming remake.

As reported Tuesday by Deadline, the classic Western will be getting a modernized update through a conglomerate of European Hollywood veterans.

Euro Gang Entertainment will helm the new film with support from Italy-based Jolly Film, which helped distribute the ’60s version.

(Fun fact: “A Fistful of Dollars” came out in Italy in 1964, before debuting for American audiences in 1967.)

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“It’s still early in the process so production details are under wraps for now,” Deadline reported.

Perhaps in a slightly worrying sign, the outlet also speculated that this film should be in English, while also noting that very little information is otherwise available — including whether the 94-year-old Eastwood will be involved in any way.

“This would most likely be English-language but that hasn’t been confirmed by the team and a writer, start date and cast have yet to be revealed,” Deadline noted.

There also does not appear to be anything resembling a release window for the remake.

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Given the aforementioned lack of knowledge, the quality and reception of this new “A Fistful of Dollars” will certainly be up for debate and critical analysis.

The quality and reception of the ’60s “A Fistful of Dollars” is up for no such debate anymore: It is a lauded film, period.

Starring a young and relatively unknown Eastwood as the “Man with No Name” (unofficially tagged as “Joe” in the end credits), a wandering gunman stumbles into a town along the U.S.-Mexico border.

There, the gunman opts to play two warring factions — whose actions are threatening to ruin the town — against each other.

An ensuing tale of heroism, honor and ludicrously accurate marksmanship plays out, before (mild spoiler for a film that came out six decades ago) the unnamed gunman successfully wanders off into the sunset with his mission very much accomplished.

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The film not only put Eastwood on the map as a bona fide movie star but also re-energized the Western genre as a sort of Euro-Western product from Italian filmmaker Sergio Leone.

“A Fistful of Dollars” was met with some derision and poor reviews when it debuted in America.

The New York Times, for instance, blasted the film in 1967 for being “egregiously synthetic” and called out Eastwood as a “morbid, amusing, campy fraud.”

Many other critics echoed that sentiment — but it didn’t matter.



The film developed a cult following that helped launch a trilogy of movies featuring Eastwood’s “Man with No Name” with the highly lauded “For a Few Dollars More” and, perhaps Eastwood’s most famous film, “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.”

The original “A Fistful of Dollars” was not without controversy, however.

As chronicled by The Film Foundation, Leone was sued by famed Japanese director Akira Kurosawa and the Japanese studio that produced “Yojimbo” — a 1961 samurai film where a wandering ronin also stumbles upon a town torn asunder by rival gangs.

Given some of the remarkably similar plot points between the two films, the parties eventually settled on an agreement that saw Kurosawa get 15 percent of all box office earnings from “A Fistful of Dollars.”

Kurosawa reportedly made more money from that legal settlement than the entire theatrical run of “Yojimbo.”


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Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics.
Bryan Chai has written news and sports for The Western Journal for more than five years and has produced more than 1,300 stories. He specializes in the NBA and NFL as well as politics. He graduated with a BA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona. He is an avid fan of sports, video games, politics and debate.
Birthplace
Hawaii
Education
Class of 2010 University of Arizona. BEAR DOWN.
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English, Korean
Topics of Expertise
Sports, Entertainment, Science/Tech




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