The internet got into a tizzy earlier this week when news came that Warner Bros. Pictures was considering some kind of reboot of The Matrix. The initial report indicated that it wasn’t clear what form this project would take, but many assumed that The Matrix reboot was just going to retread the same story of the original movie. Those who thought more outside the box understood that the studio was approaching The Matrix universe in the same way that Disney and Lucasfilm are approaching Star Wars with movies like Rogue One.
Zak Penn is the writer tasked with scripting whatever this new project set in the world of The Matrix will be, and he recently took to Twitter to clarify that The Matrix reboot isn’t really a reboot at all. Find out more below.
In a series of updates, Zak Penn wrote on Twitter:
“Can’t comment yet except to say that the words ‘reboot’ and ‘remake’ were from an article. Let’s stop responding to inaccurate news. All I can say at this point is no one could or should REBOOT the Matrix. People who know Animatrix and the comics understand. Do I want to see more stories set in the universe of The Matrix? Yes. Because it’s a brilliant idea that generates great stories. Look at what people are doing with Xmen universe. Between Logan and Legion and Deadpool, does anyone want them to stop? Not me.”
The Animatrix is a series of short films in various animation styles that take place in the world of The Matrix, but most of them only have tangential connections to The Matrix movies. There are a couple of shorts that have more direct connections to The Matrix Reloaded, but otherwise, the shorts do a good job of standing on their own.
As Penn indicates, fans who like The Animatrix (as well as comics with similarly isolated stories) will understand what the studio can do with The Matrix as a property. That’s clearly the best approach to The Matrix rather than just trying to tell the same story with new characters and a slightly different approach.
In a few more updates, Penn further shows that he’s not clueless when it comes to the legacy of The Matrix and that rebooting it in the traditional sense is not a smart move. One update said, “How about just re-release The Matrix? Don’t reboot it; you can’t do better.” While another shows his respect for Keanu Reeves by saying, “If I were going to recast Keanu Reeves, I would cast Keanu Reeves.”
Penn’s writing credits may not be the most inspiring, with work on X-Men: The Last Stand being one of the standouts. But he did work on the story for The Avengers, and he also wrote Ready Player One for Steven Spielberg to direct. Penn even wrote a little joke on Twitter saying, “I’m working on the reboot of Ready Player One. Same creative team and cast. To be released concurrently with the original.”
Though many like to bash Last Action Hero, a movie that Zak Penn wrote, that’s something that ended up being muddled by the studio. For what it’s worth, I think that movie gets a bum rap. Though it fumbles some of the rules that the narrative creates and gets a little messy, the core of the story is smart and just cool. That kind of approach to genre movies indicates that Zak Penn may have a good idea on how to expand The Matrix universe without being lame. Personally, I’m willing to see what Penn can do with The Matrix, especially if any of these directors get involved.
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