The vaunted Charlie’s Angels reboot is officially go – but the news has created controversy, with fans unhappy with the lineup and even the concept of the ‘70s girl power reboot.
Former Twilight star Kristen Stewart, Power Rangers actress Naomi Scott and British newcomer Ella Balinska will star as the glamorous crime-busting Angels.
The new movie will focus on the “next generation of Angels,” according to The Hollywood Reporter, with Charlie’s agency now staffed by “teams around the planet.”
The franchise kicked off as a hit TV show in 1976 then spawned a big screen reboot starting Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu and Drew Barrymore in 2011.
To be released next year, the movie will be helmed and co-written by Pitch Perfect’s Elizabeth Banks, who will also play the first female Bosley.
Bill Murray and Bernie Mac have played the loveable mouthpiece in previous movies.
“Charlie’s Angels, for me, is one of the original brands to celebrate the empowered woman since its debut in the ’70s,” Banks, 44, said in a statement.
She promised to deliver “a new era of modern and global Angels”, aadding, “I couldn’t be more excited to work with Kristen, Naomi and Ella.”
Not everyone shared Banks’ enthusiasm.
While Vanity Fair and Variety went big with the news, Banks was immediately besieged when she posted it on Instagram.
A post shared by Elizabeth Banks (@elizabethbanks) on
“Boo!” said one user. “No way. Not a good pick,” said another. A third said, “I’m tired of the one token cast member. That’s not what diversity means.”
Stewart, 27, copped the most flak.
“Kristen Stewart as an angel? She’s as playful as Ryan Gosling,” said a Twitter user.
“I guess if they’re making Charlie’s Emo Angels it would work.”
Another Twitter user called Stewart “low on libidinality” and suggested Margot Robbie or Game of Thrones star Rose Leslie as better choices.
One movie fan blamed Banks: “Elizabeth had a chance to do something cool and completely failed with this lineup.”
Not everyone was up in arms. “Can’t wait for Stewart to crush this and shut all you haters up,” said one fan. Added another, she “can be a bad ass fighter.”
Stewart was defended by another user but the same white knight slammed the “sexist schlocky” concept:
Ah, so it begins. The Stewart trashing by hack dudebros, 'the keepers of Taste'. Anywho, if anyone can turn this sexist schlocky business into something worth watching it's Banks and Stewart. 👍
— Emi (@shruburbia) July 26, 2018
That view was echoed: “Why would anyone make another piece of sh-t?”
The movie is Stewart’s return to franchises after Twilight and Snow White and the Huntsman.
“You take a story that’s usually kind of, for lack of a better word, not silly, but just kind of funny, campy,” she told Entertainment Tonight in February about the project.
“The movie should still be fun but, like, if you ground it and make it about women that really know how to help each other, it’ll be, like, perfect to release now. Like, we’re all together and strong.”
English actress Scott, 25, played the Pink Power Ranger in the Power Rangers movie, and has also signed on to play Princess Jasmine in Disney’s upcoming live action Aladdin remake.
The daughter of two pastors, she’s done missionary work and is married to English soccer player Jordan Spence.
Balinska, 21, is best known for her work in sedate British TV series Midsomer Murders but has serious action chops: a national level javelin thrower, she graduated from the Academy of Performance Combat.
“I play pretend and kick ass for a living,” she says on her Instagram account, which has less than 13,000 followers.