Contrary to what people might think, the Gremlins movie is not something meant for all ages. The film actually has the same rating as Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
The Gremlins movie which was released in 1984 was so intense and violent that it was rated PG-13. Steven Spielberg was the one who suggested that the Motion Picture Association of America alter its rating.
What was the Movie About?
Gremlins is a horror and dark humor film directed by Joe Dante and written by Chris Columbus. The plot of the film is based on legendary creatures that are quite chaotic. The story follows a young man who is gifted a strange creature as a pet. The creature then spawns into aggressive monsters that wreak havoc on a town during Christmas Eve after certain rules are not followed; do not expose to sunlight, do not let it get wet, and above all, never feed it after midnight.
Due to the violent nature of the film, the rating was changed from PG to PG-13 after it was heavily criticized. Steven Spielberg also received the same complaints with Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom that based on his suggestion the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) altered their rating system. (Source: Common Sense Media)
The Production of the Film
At the time Gremlins came out, the trend was combining the genre of horror and comedy. Films like Ghostbusters were all the rage, in fact, it was released on the same weekend Gremlins came out.
Chris Columbus made the story of the film. He claims that his inspiration came from his loft when he would hear mice moving about, describing them as creepy. When he wrote the screenplay and showed them to potential producers, he did not actually intend for it to be filmed but instead wanted to showcase his writing abilities. Spielberg took an interest in the script, and the rest was history.
It’s one of the most original things I’ve come across in many years, which is why I bought it.Steven Spielberg
After deciding to produce the film, Spielberg picked Joe Dante to direct because of his experience with the horror-comedy genre. Before shooting, the script when through a series of drafts. The first version of the script was much darker than the final film. Various scenes were cut including one where the protagonist’s mother was beheaded by the little monsters in the film. (Source: IMDB)
How Much Money Did the Movie Make?
The film was a financial success. It was produced with an $11 million budget. Although it was more expensive than what Spielberg initially planned, it was still relatively cheap for its time. Gremlins made about $12 million on its opening night in the United States and Canada. Worldwide, the film made over $153 million. (Source: IMDB)
Are There Any Sequels to the Gremlins Film?
After the 1984 success, a sequel was released in 1990 entitled Gremlins 2: The New Batch. Compared to the first film, the sequel did not do so well. It worked with a $50 million budget but was only able to earn $41 million in worldwide sales. The third film is currently under work. It was initially supposed to be a reboot of the 1984 film, but instead, they decided to make it a sequel with Carl Ellsworth writing the screenplay based on the original characters by Chris Columbus. (Source: IMDB)