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Just as it has brought most industries to a grinding halt, the coronavirus pandemic has shut down production on many movies and TV shows. However, some folks in the entertainment industry have found clever ways to continue making new content.
Back in March, filmmaker Jason Reitman came up with an idea for a “Princess Bride” remake in which all of the actors would film their parts at home on their phones.
Now, the first several chapters of the homemade remake of the classic 1987 film are available to stream on Quibi. The first chapter of “Home Movie: The Princess Bride” premiered on Monday, June 29, and a total of 10 chapters will become available over a period of two weeks.
Each chapter features the classic roles played by different actors, so, for example, we get a glimpse of what “The Princess Bride” would look like if Westley were played by Jon Hamm, Jack Black and Neil Patrick Harris, among others.
In this preview for the first chapter posted to YouTube by Quibi, you can see Common and Tiffany Haddish portraying Westley and Princess Buttercup, Hugh Jackman playing Prince Humperdinck, and Rob Reiner, the director of the original movie, appearing as the grandfather who reads the story of Westley and Buttercup to his grandson:
Fred Savage, who played the grandson in the original “Princess Bride” makes a cameo in one chapter, while other chapters feature stars like Joe Jonas, Sophie Turner, Jennifer Garner, David Oyelowo, Sam Rockwell, Retta, Chris Pine and many more.
As part of the project, Quibi made a $1 million donation to World Central Kitchen, a nonprofit that provides food assistance in the wake of disasters, including the coronavirus pandemic.
“They’re all donating their time,” Reitman told Vanity Fair of the actors in the remake. “The money is for a good cause, and it’s fun to connect with a movie you love. In recreating it, you get to feel a little bit of what it was like to make the original.”
Quibi content executive Shawna Thomas tweeted out this funny photo of actor Thomas Lennon repurposing his “Reno 911” costume for his performance of Prince Humperdinck in his portion of the remake:
— Shawna Thomas (@Shawna) July 3, 2020
For his part, Reiner is happy to see his iconic movie receive such a fun and loving tribute.
“What’s nice about it is that I made a film that’s lasted so long,” Reiner told Vanity Fair. “Now it’s over 33 years. And the biggest kick I get out of it is that kids who saw it when they were eight or nine years old have kids that age now, and they’re seeing it and liking it. It seems to have stood the test of time.”