Hollywood keeps trying to reboot this classic Don Knotts movie

One potential director described it as ''the most horrifying thing he'd ever seen''.

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Reboots in Hollywood are nothing new. Especially today, it seems like there are more reboots coming out than original content. As of the time of this writing, the box office top-grossing movie of the whole year is the sequel to the 1986 flick Top Gun. That, of course, is Top Gun: Maverick, which has grossed over $650 million so far.

We're getting new Jurassic Park, Matrix, and even Scream movies that top the box office. Maybe it would be more surprising to find out that there's something that isn't being brought back for modern audiences.

However, there's one reboot project that just can't seem to get off the ground. That would be the 1964 Don Knotts comedy, The Incredible Mr. Limpet.

The movie was a clever blend of live-action and animation that followed Knotts' mild-mannered fish enthusiast, Mr. Limpet as he worked to bring down Nazi submarines with the U.S. Navy. It's probably one of the best-known Knotts movies, along with The Ghost and Mr. Chicken. So it isn't all that shocking that Hollywood would want to bring Mr. Limpet to a new generation.

The first Limpet reboot began coming together in 1996. At that time Jim Carrey, fresh off the success of The Mask and Dumb and Dumber, was attached as the lead role. As a comedian with a strength in physical comedy, he seemed like a fitting replacement for Knotts. Knotts was even aware of the remake and offered his support! So it should have come about perfectly, right? Well...

After the original director stepped down, the studio approached Brad Bird, known for The Incredibles, Ratatouille, and The Iron Giant. At that point they showed him the animation they'd already done on Carrey's fish-Limpet.

Patton Oswalt, who worked with Bird on Ratatouille, said "All Brad Bird said when he described it to me… I go, 'What’d it look like?' He said, 'If you saw this in the water, you would get out of the water and run screaming and tell everyone the world was ending.' It was the most horrifying thing he’d ever seen."

Apparently the horrifying Carrey-fish was enough to kill the project for then. In the next few years it would cycle through directors like Mike Judge (King of the Hill, Beavis and Butt-Head) and Kevin Lima (Enchanted). Stars considered for the lead role included Zach Galifianakis, Robin Williams, Mike Meyers, and Adam Sandler.

Finally, in 2014, director Richard Linklater, known for School of Rock and Boyhood, signed on to the movie. Actors in talks for various roles included Jon Hamm, Sarah Silverman, Keegan-Michael Key, and Jordan Peele.

Later in the year, Linklater left to focus on Everybody Wants Some!! Since then, The Incredible Mr. Limpet has been stalled at the studio. Perhaps one day it will finally get out of development limbo and Mr. Limpet will swim again. 

What do you think? Who would you pick to fill Don Knotts' shoes?

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vonstockhoff 14 months ago
Jim Parsons, "Sheldon" from Big Bang Theory could pull it off perfectly I think. I have often thought they could do a reboot of TAGS (or a movie) and he could play Barney Fife. Ben Affleck could play Sheriff Taylor I think. *Disclaimer: not necessarily a fan of either personally, just think they could do the roles really well.
MOT1970 17 months ago
No! Hollywood always fowls up remakes and reboots.
TinaMarieHaddadRhodes 22 months ago
Forget it. Don Knotts is the only one who could ever play the part. Not being funny but Don looked like a fish that’s why he fit the part. Watch it and you will see what I mean. Also his type of comedy style can never be copied or redone…
eddiecantorfan 22 months ago
The song If I Only Had A
Brain sung by the Scarecrow Ray Bolger on
The Wizard of Oz (1939).
eddiecantorfan 22 months ago
A clip of Eddie Cantor singing the song Okay Toots
From the 1934 Movie called
Kid Millions.Thie is the movie that Pee Wee Herman (Paul Reubens) wanted to do a REMAKE of.
I wonder if the Pee Wee Herman Version of Kid Millions would have been as good as the Eddie Cantor Version of Kid Millions.
Eddie CANTOR Joe Penner and Pee Wee Herman had similar Acting Styles.
ttenchantr 22 months ago
No to all remakes but a great big no to this one.
eddiecantorfan ttenchantr 22 months ago
A Remake of The Invisible
Man starring Randolph ROBERTS .
Lacey 22 months ago
WHY do we need a remake of The Incredible Mr. Limpet? That is the first question that needs to be answered. What needs to be done to this story that could not be done sixty years ago ? Is this one of those basic to humanity type stories that each generation needs to take a crack at, or was it a product of its time made a classic by the unique talents of Don Knotts ?
MichaelZvirblis 22 months ago
What ever became of that remake of The Thing With Two Heads, which was to star Steve Bucemi & Kirstee Alley, but Boardwalk Empire interfered?
RichLorn 22 months ago
Next they'll remake the Thin Man series starring Jason Alexander and Kim Kardasian.
(Even though I'm a fan of Alexander)
SaltyOne 22 months ago
They will need an actor who is a convincing Mr. Hapless, like Don was. I don’t think any of the actors mentioned meet that criteria. We have to BELIEVE Mr Limpett really wants to be a fish.
JoeGuenther 22 months ago
Why not just rerun the movie in theaters. The best movies were fresh ideas like North by Northwest. A shame when tv shows and movies get unnecessary reboots.
MC1707 JoeGuenther 22 months ago
I agree. There are many movies many of us would like to see on the big screen. Many that were before my time. I always wanted to see Gone with the Wind, and The Wizard of Oz in a theater setting.
eddiecantorfan MC1707 22 months ago
🦁 Lions and 🐅 Tigers and
🐻 Bears Oh My !
-The Wizard of Oz
Charlotte 22 months ago
That's why they're called classics. Doesn't Hollywood have enough talent & imagination to come up with new material!!
Nala92129 Charlotte 22 months ago
Thank you! Excellent post!
Why use their brain if they can just remake. No imagination these days. Oh well…
eddiecantorfan 22 months ago
It's too bad that Pee Wee Herman never has filmed a
REMAKE of the 1934 EDDIE CANTOR movie called Kid Millions. My theory is that the
Ice Cream Factory for the kids
that Eddie Cantor gave away
Free Ice cream to the Children
Was the inspiration that gave
Pee Wee Herman (Paul Reubens)
the idea to have a playhouse for the kids on Pee Wees Playhouse.
Eddie Cantor Movies:
Whoopee (1930)
Palmy Days 1931
The Kid From Spain 1932
Roman Scandals 1933
Kid Millions 1934
Strike Me Pink 1936
Ali Baba Goes To Town 1937
Forty Little Mothers 1940
Show Business
If You Knew Susie
Thank Your Lucky Stars
KellyTenace 22 months ago
Yeah, unless perhaps they went with an animated feature it'd just be kind of creepy. Let it be.
Claude 22 months ago
Here's a thought: Leave it Alone!
When I wanna watch the movie I'll simply watch the one & only.
RichLorn Claude 22 months ago
Producers think if it was a hit once, a remake is an short walk to the bank.
Sooner 22 months ago
I absolutely love Don, and all his movies-- except this one. I only saw trailers for it, but I had no desire to see a movie where he was an animated fish. He was absolutely one of a kind as a physical actor combined with his verbal deliveries. It made no sense to me to have him in an animation. Same goes for Pleasantville, where his only appearances were head shots on a tube TV. And having him use bad language on that was rather jarring. And I'm not a fuddy-duddy.
Not all the movie was animated. Lots of the movie was Don and the other actors. Then eventually he became a fish then the animation begins. Then it goes back to regular through out the movie with the animation. It really was a entertaining fun movie…
lauramushkat 22 months ago
some things are best left alone. those who knew Don Knots from tv before he was with Andy Griffith knew what to expect which helped him on Andy's show. then you add what he was able to do with Andy. he had a certain background of the nervous guy etc. so you had certain expectations of having an enjoyable time watching him. he was perfect for the movie roles. you would have to change too much to have someone with another background do what he did!
TSmith1999 22 months ago
Hollywood, STOP IT! No more reboots. All you will wind up is a forgettable pile of woke interpreted movies that have none of the magic of the originals.
Claude TSmith1999 22 months ago
I couldn't have said it any better myself.... Thank you!
JoeGuenther TSmith1999 22 months ago
It would be worth making a reboot if the original was UNCUT on TCM
Michael JoeGuenther 22 months ago
TCM airs an edited version?
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