Fiddler on the Roof: PLEASE Don’t Remake It

Topol in Fiddler on the Roof. Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer.

Fiddler on the Roof is a classic movie musical and one of the best musicals of all time, which should be reason enough to not remake it.

I don’t lie in that I am very picky when it comes to watching musicals, be it on stage or the big screen.  But when it comes to classic movies, they ought to be left untouched.  In this case of Fiddler, what more needs to be said?  Listen, it’s one thing to revive a musical for the stage.  It’s another thing altogether to completely remake the film.  We’re talking about a film that took home three Oscars and earned another five nominations.

The news was first announced on Thursday that Hamilton director Thomas Kail will direct from a script written by Steven Levenson.  Kail will produce with Dan Jinks and Aaron Harnick.

I’m not going to get into the specifics of the film, which I reviewed back in 2018.  Last year saw the release of Fiddler: A Miracle of Miracles.  This documentary dives into the history of the musical and it’s film adaptation.  If that isn’t enough, there are a pair of books that look into the musical’s history in popular culture.  Alisa Solomon documents the legacy in Wonder of Wonders: A Cultural History of Fiddler on the Roof.  The hardcover version was first published in 2013, one year before the 50th anniversary of the stage debut.  However, this book wouldn’t be the only book to touch on the musical in its 50th anniversary.  Barbara Isenberg wrote Tradition!: The Highly Improbable, Ultimately Triumphant Broadway-to-Hollywood Story of Fiddler on the Roof, the World’s Most Beloved Musical.

If Hollywood is out of original ideas, why not turn to those stage musicals that have yet to be turned into iconic films?  We don’t need to remake Fiddler for a new generation because we already have a classic that stands the test of time.  Why even bother with a remake?!?  If newer generations aren’t going to watch older classics because they’re from pre-1980, it shouldn’t be on Hollywood to remake them.

There are so many original ideas out there that are waiting to be produced.  We’re now in this Hollwyood era where if an idea doesn’t already have a built-in fan base, the chances of a studio producing it are even harder.  So as Hollywood readies yet another remake for production, those filmmakers with original ideas take yet another hit.  Saddening, really.

It is impossible to remake the classic Fiddler on the Roof for the big screen.  We already have

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.