Cary Elwes shared his thoughts on the possibility of remaking one of his most enduring classics for a modern audience — The Princess Bride. For those unfamiliar, the original Princess Bride was made in 1987 by director Rob Reiner starring Cary Elwes, Robin Wright, Mandy Patinkin, Chris Sarandon, Wallace Shawn, André the Giant and Christopher Guest. Based on the 1973 novel of the same name, the plot follows the love story of Princess Buttercup (Wright), a classical princess in a fairy tale world who is forced to marry the horrible Prince Humperdinck (Sarandon). However, Princess Buttercup is in love with a farm boy who turns out to be none other than the famed Dread Pirate Roberts (Elwes), who will stop at nothing to whisk his beautiful love away from her royal obligations to live happily ever after with him.
If it sounds like a classic fairy tale that literally any filmmaker and literally any cast could easily duplicate, well you need to take that thinking over to yet another new Cinderella remake or something because The Princess Bride is not here for your nonsense. The movie is a singular entity that, through a combination of masterful writing and even more masterful individual performances, simply cannot be retold without looking like a mere parody. At least, that’s what Cary Elwes seems to think.
Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter about his upcoming turn in Mission Impossible 7, Cary Elwes explained his thoughts on the myriad of pitches for a reboot, prequel, sequel, etc. that he and other Princess Bride fans have heard throughout the years. He began by noting why studios would want to reboot such a popular film — because so much money for production gets sucked into advertising, studios gravitate toward stories with pre-existing name recognition. However, he believes that the money saved on advertising pales in comparison to the money that would be spent making an ill-fated reboot that fails to capture the magic of the previous cast.
“If a film has landed in the hearts of the public, then, to me, it is not a good idea to try and revisit it,” he explained. Indeed, it would simply feel trashy to see any other actor try on Cary Elwes’ legendary catchphrase “As you wish” from the movie. Could anyone but Mandy Patinkin utter the phrase “my name is Inigo Montoya, you killed my father, prepare to die”? Does anyone really want to see a different actor utter Wallace Shawn’s “Inconceivable”? What about Billy Crystal’s delivery of “You are the Brute Squad!” Finally, does anybody want a peanut?
There’s a reason we love William Shatner shouting “KHAN!” and cringe at Zachary Quinto’s attempt to recapture it in Star Trek: Into Darkness and Cary Elwes gets why. The only semi-successful reboot of The Princess Bride that’s ever actually gotten off the ground was Qubi’s star-studded at-home remake. Even that leaned more toward parody as it was a COVID-19 quarantine venture that saw celebrities attempt to recreate the whole movie from home on a budget. Alas, when it comes to actually doing an honest to God remake of the movie, it seems executives far and wide know that Cary Elwes is right.
That isn’t to say that Cary Elwes and the rest of the cast aren’t down to revisit the film once in a while. Last year, to benefit the Wisconsin Democratic Party ahead of the 2020 election, the cast joined together for a virtual script reading and Q&A in what ended up being a glorious victory lap for fans of the movie and a wonderful way to see everyone back together after all these years. Hosted by comedian Patton Oswalt, it’s likely that will have to suffice as the most modern-day retelling of The Princess Bride that fans are likely to get any time soon, though.