'Jaws' Star Would Like to See CGI Used to Improve Effects for Re-Release

Jaws is considered by many to be one of the greatest films of all time, though star Richard Dreyfuss thinks there are some elements of the film that could be enhanced. The actor recently shared that he'd like to see the film be restored with contemporary special effects that he believes could improve the techniques used more than 40 years ago.

“I think they should do it, it would be huge and it would open up the film to younger people,” Dreyfuss shared with Deadline about the potential of re-releasing the film with upgraded visual effects. “Is that blasphemy? No, no, I don’t think so. The technology now could make the shark look as good as the rest of the movie.”

Director Steven Spielberg made the ambitious, and somewhat disastrous, decision to shoot the film on the actual ocean instead of attempting to recreate a large body of water in the controlled setting of a soundstage. This resulted in countless malfunctions with the animatronic shark used to film the movie, as the saltwater permeated the creation in unexpected ways.

These malfunctions led to the film running over budget and over schedule, while also preventing Spielberg from utilizing footage of the shark, as so little was ultimately usable. Interestingly, it was the film's refusal to show audiences the beast that created such a frightening adventure, forcing our minds to conjure up images of the creature.

Even though the shark only appears in a handful of shots, Dreyfuss thinks those shots would be better if CGI replaced the practical prop.

“There are people who say Jaws is a perfect film otherwise and it is amazing what Steven accomplished with the challenges he had,” the actor noted. “But you’re dead-right, I think you’re on to something. They should put the money into CGI [to replace] that beast and make it come alive.”

Dreyfuss might be interested in seeing what could happen with the inclusion of CGI, though we won't expect Spielberg to take this advice to heart. The director previously utilized CGI to "restore" E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, which didn't sit well with fans.

For a re-release of E.T., Spielberg digitally replaced guns from police officers' hands with walkie-talkies, as the law enforcement was facing a group of kids. This wasn't an egregious downgrade, but the director also used CGI to replace E.T. in some scenes in hopes of creating more "believable" reactions than were capable from a puppet, with audiences feeling as though this took charm away from the character.


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[H/T Deadline]