Classic Remakes

Classic Remakes
ESSENCE.COM Apr, 16, 2010

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Though the British version of this film hit theaters just three years ago, Chris Rock just knew an all-Black cast of “Death At a Funeral” would be just as hilarious…if not more!

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A quarter century after the Dreams took Broadway by storm, Jennifer, Beyonce and Anika brought the story of the fictional trio to the big screen in 2006. It was worth the wait.

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A then-budding actor, Will Smith did a little moonlighting from his day job in Bel-Air job to take on his film debut, “Six Degrees of Separation,” which was based on a semi-autobiographical stageplay of the same name.

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Chris Rock found himself caught between his suburban life with his lovely wife and the manic misadventures with his club-hopping party pal from his past in “I Think I Love My Wife.” Rock’s 2007 version was based on the 1972 French film, “Chloe in the Afternoon.”

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Although the 2009 remake couldn’t hold a candle to the original, we were thrilled to see original cast member, Debbie Allen, back on the big screen in the updated version of “Fame.”

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In 2003, Mario Van Peebles remixed his dad’s controversial, indie feature, “Sweet Sweetbacks’ Baadasssss Song,” which was originally released in 1971. We’re sure that poppa Melvin was quite proud.

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Jada Pinkett Smith joined the ensemble cast of “The Women,” a 2008 remake of the 1939 film of the same name.

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Denzel Washington and John Travolta teamed up for last year’s remake of the 1974 action adventure, “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3.”

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Cedric the Entertainer led the cast of this big-screen remake of the television classic, “The Honeymooners.” It was kind of funny to imagine Ralph Kramden as a brother!

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Regina King joined Chris Rock for the 2001 film, “Down to Earth,” a remake of 1978’s “Heaven Can Wait.”

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