Are you the kind of movie fan who thinks ”Gone With the Wind” or ”Casablanca” would have been perfect if only Mike Myers had costarred in them? Myers hears your cry. According to the Hollywood Reporter, the ”Austin Powers” star has signed a deal with DreamWorks (the studio that cast him in ”Shrek”) to acquire old movies and rework them, using digital technology to splice himself and other actors into them for comic effect. Using a musical analogy, Myers calls the idea ”film sampling.”
”Film sampling is an exciting way to put an original spin on existing films and allow audiences to see old movies in a new light,” Myers told the Reporter. ”Rap artists have been doing this for years with music, and now we are able to take that same concept and apply it to film. Think of me as the Puff Daddy of film or ‘M. Diddy’ or ‘M & M’ or just ‘M,’ or maybe when you sample movies you don’t need a special name.”
The idea is itself sampled. As far back as 1965, Woody Allen took a Japanese-made spy movie, dubbed in his own comic dialogue, and rereleased it as ”What’s Up, Tiger Lily?” Two decades ago, Steve Martin used editing tricks to weave old clips from 1940s suspense movies into his detective spoof ”Dead Men Don’t Wear Plaid” in order to appear to be interacting with the likes of Humphrey Bogart. More recently, we’ve seen the digital resurrection of Fred Astaire and John Wayne in commercials for vacuum cleaners and beer, and last year, writer/director Steve Oedekerk spliced himself into a 1970s martial arts movie to make ”Kung Pow: Enter the Fist,” a spoof for which he is currently developing a sequel. Myers didn’t say which films he and DreamWorks planned to rework, but Variety reports that the first project will be directed by Jay Roach (who directed all three ”Austin Powers” movies) and will also involve Kid in the Hall Dave Foley.