Last week, it was widely reported that one of the original Hook cast members was setting out to direct a short film called Bangarang, which will serve as a prequel for the Lost Boys seen in Steven Spielberg’s cult classic from the 90s. Dante Basco, who played leader of the Lost Boys Rufio, launched a Kickstarter campaign to get the project off the ground, setting a goal of $30,000. Here we are just a few days later, and the short film has soared past its intended benchmark.
Bangarang currently has 831 backers, and there are still 24 days left to go in the campaign. Fans shouldn’t give up just yet. Because if Basco can bring the full tally up to at least $200,000 or higher, he and his team will make a feature film prequel to Hook. Now, we’re not completely sure how that will work, as Hook is owned by Sony Pictures and Amblin Entertainment. Perhaps they could get Steven Spielberg’s blessing. Basco offers this synopsis on his Kickstarter page.
“This is the story about Rufio, before the mohawk, before Neverland, before he was The Pan. Roofus is a 13-year-old kid who is destined to be more than he is. After his mother is forced to put him into a foster home, he and his rag-tag group of best friends, a Jamaican boy named Julani and a bright-eyed latina force of nature named Ella, find a way for Roofus to escape his ill fate, find his happy thought and fulfill his destiny. The story has been reverse engineered from what was set-up in Hook. We answer all the questions you’ve ever wondered, How and why is Rufio the leader of the Lost Boys? Where does “bangarang” come from? And of course, how he gets the mohawk.”
It seems there is quite a bit of fan interest in not only Hook but the character of Rufio. Steven Spielberg hasn’t had too many flops in his career, but Hook was definitely one of the bigger ones. Though, it wasn’t a complete disaster. Trashed by critics at the time of its release, the movie pulled in $119.6 million domestically off a $70 million budget. It wound up making $300.8 million worldwide. But it was a big enough disappointment that Tri-Star and Amblin, who released the movie in theaters originally, never sought to make a sequel.
Now, we actually may get a follow-up of sorts with this movie. And Dante Basco seems very passionate about it. Jonah Feingold, who is set to make his feature directorial debut with Wendy, starring Brittany Snow, this summer, is directing and will co-write with producer Jeremy Dylan. Wendy is also a movie set in the world of Peter Pan. Basco has issued a casting call for the short, looking for Roofus, described as being 13, with a young face, scrawny but with potential. There is a hopeful glimmer in his eye. Ella is 13, a latina force of nature. An ass-kicking old soul with a big heart. And Julani is 13, a big personality and hilarious when he needs to be. Fun and fiercely loyal to his friends. About why you should support this short, Basco says this.
“In a world of endless sequels, prequels, and reboots, we feel Bangarang holds a unique place. Sure, it draws off a popular studio film, and billion dollar property (Peter Pan), but the key for us is that this movie is a social commentary on the current world climate. We are taking a beloved character out of his comfort zone. This is an underdog, coming-of-age film in all the best ways. It’s the story of a under represented group of heroes, bullied because they’re different, and nothing more (such as Roofus, who comes from a immigrant family) – who won’t let their villains get in the way of destiny. We think there’s a hunger for good storytelling and strong execution, as well as fun original characters. With Bangarang, we plan to do just that.”
So, as you can see, just because the first goal has been reached doesn’t mean you should give up on the project just yet. If you’re a fan with a vested interest in Hook, and you want to see a full-length prequel playing in your local indie theater or on VOD, you better call your friends and have them donate as well. As Basco says, this movie is about believing in yourself, and not letting your past define who you are. It is about finding your destiny and forcing it into existence.