Reboot “The Maltese Falcon”?

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Before my fellow cinephiles accuse me of treason, let me make this clear: I’m generally not a fan of the idea of rebooting classic movies. I want to live in a world where everyone watches classic movies as often as they watch new ones. We don’t live in that world, but we don’t need to cater to the lowest common denominator either. That said…

Let’s do a reboot of The Maltese Falcon. A good reboot, not a crappy one. A reboot with a clever screenwriter and a great modern director and a thoroughly charismatic cast.


As much as the original source is a hardboiled detective story, it also implies a larger story of a gang of five globetrotting treasure hunters, including a woman and three gay men (Kaspar Gutman and Wilmer are a couple, and Joel Cairo’s a total femme. That’s not a guess on my part, it’s well-established.) The plot isn’t about their identities, it’s about finding the treasure. As much as the movie had to follow the ridiculous constraints of the Hays Code, that’s still revolutionary.

“But reboots aren’t necessary!” The classic Humphrey Bogart version from 1941 was already a remake of an adaptation of a novel. That line has been crossed. Anyway, a reboot would be necessary before making a set of sequels. “But sequels aren’t necessary!” So? A franchise of Maltese Falcon movies would mean a bunch of adventures about Brigid O’Shaughnessy, Joel Cairo, Kasper Gutman, (Wilmer gets dumped in the first movie (spoilers?) Maybe he comes back, maybe he doesn’t.) and Sam Spade getting dragged into the whole thing. Those are great characters. I want to watch them get into all sorts of trouble over all sorts of prizes. O’Shaughnessy would have to break out of jail, of course. (spoilers?)

I don’t have the rights to write a Maltese Falcon adaptation myself, and I can’t pitch without a product, so someone else needs make this happen. If you do, please let me know so I can spam my Facebook and Twitter feed with constant updates about the project.

That is all. Thank you.

Stills from 1941 movie trailers are apparently public domain. Neat.
Stills from 1941 movie trailers are apparently public domain. Neat.

2 thoughts on “Reboot “The Maltese Falcon”?

    Adam said:
    May 29, 2015 at 1:54 pm

    Maltese Falcon (the book) will hit public domain in 2025, assuming no more extensions apply…

      Erin Sneath responded:
      May 29, 2015 at 2:07 pm

      Cool. I’ll put that in the calendar for ten years from now.

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