There have been numerous rumors about a third Gremlins film for years and years. As always I greet such things with mixed feelings. Fans are eternal optimists, but we also have learned to expect the worst in situations like the return of a treasured icon like Gremlins.
Recently it has been reported that a script for Gremlins 3 has been completed. So far it sounds almost too good to be true.
Chris Columbus, who wrote the first two Gremlins movies, has written the screenplay. Good. He says that the proposed third movie with be "twisted and dark". Very good. CGI will be limited and old school puppetry is to be employed in Gremlins 3. Better all the time. And star Zach Galligan is said to be returning. Hopefully Phoebe Cates will follow suit.
Maybe they can even dust off poor Corey Feldman to reprise his role. But then Feldman is a long, long way from the cuddly moppet that he was in 1984.
The biggest hope of all is that director Joe Dante will be invited to helm Gremlins 3.
Under Dante's supervision, Gremlins was a huge success. One of the biggest of the 80's, and not just in box office revenue. Merchandising was enormous with Gremlins. Kids could not get enough of those cute, diabolical little demons.
It's kind of a retro surprise that Gremlins was as big as it was. It's a pretty dark movie. Not just the lovable Mogwai turning violent, but the Christmas theme is pretty ominous. It's still hard to believe that the execs allowed the Phoebe Cates rant against the holiday to be in the final cut.
I love that speech, and I love Gremlins. I enjoy it all, but I particularly like the early, Capra-esque moments in the beginning of the movie.
Just imagine the possibilities of Gremlins in today's world. The damage they could inflict upon software. I'd love to see social media chaos, such as liberals waking to see that they have bestowed praise upon Donald Trump, or conservatives aghast when they see Facebook updates in their name pleading for the return of Barrack Obama.
Curiously, there is a wealthy businessman character in Gremlins 2 named Daniel Clamp, who bears a marked similarity to America's current president.
But would Universal entrust an aged director like Dante to bring a big budget project like a Gremlins sequel to the screen? Why not? Warner did it with George Miller and Mad Max, and it turned out to be the right decision.
Centerfold to the October 1984 issue of Rod Serling's Twilight Zone Magazine