We all know the drill — movie studios love to make movies similar to what other studios are making in order to compete and ultimately try and prevail. Whether it’s a historical figure or disastrous event at its core, or if it’s a new take on the many beloved fairy tales out there as we’ve been seeing lately, it happen on a pretty consistent basis.
Just such a pair of dueling movies came around in the early ’90s when Buena Vista Pictures and Warner Brothers delivered their own versions of the story of legendary law man Wyatt Earp. Buena Vista’s Tombstone is far and away the better of the two, but now it looks like we’ll get to see this very same cinematic battle once again.
It’s being reported that two new Wyatt Earp projects are in the works, one an indie flick that’s already in production and the other once again coming from Warners.
The indie, titled The First Ride of Wyatt Earp, sounds like it wants to be the next Young Guns and it delivers a cast of newcomers and unknowns, including recording artist Trace Adkins and American Idol finalist Diana DeGarmo. The interesting catch, however, is that the movie will also star Val Kilmer…this time in the role of Earp himself.
Kilmer famously played Doc Holliday in Tombstone — widely believed to be the actor’s best performance. The new movie apparently opens up with an older Earp sitting down for an interview with a reporter to tell his tale; it’s assumed that this will be the role that Kilmer plays and another younger actor will likely be cast for the youthful portion of the story.
As an indie it’s unclear just how big or small The First Ride of Wyatt Earp will be, but nevertheless, WB has announced their own new Earp project called Wild Guns. This one sounds to be much more along the lines of an action/adventure movie, being called a mixture of Tombstone and Sherlock Holmes.
The story is set after the Civil War and will see Earp and Doc Holliday teaming up once again, this time to to find and rescue the daughter of Sitting Bull who was taken by a Shaman with strange powers. Wild Guns comes from a spec script written by T.S. Nowlin.
Which of these, if any, are you more interested in seeing? One way or another, it’s really exciting to see that not only have westerns returned to the silver screen, but they’re hanging in there. The more the better, says this biased genre fan.