Applause to John's Grill owner John Konstin, who decided to put some money into the arts. When the Maltese Falcon replica displayed in the restaurant was stolen earlier this year, Mr. Konstin offered a $25,000 reward for its return. The heartless culprits were never found, however, and Mr. Konstin decided against buying an inexpensive replica or "fake," as the momentarily-panicked Kasper Gutman termed it in the final moments of the 1941 film. Instead, he commissioned Bay Area sculptor Peter Schifrin to make a new Falcon.
The reports that the new Maltese Falcon has "a fiercer, more realistic look." The sculptor himself characterized the old bird as "parroty or even pigeony."
To quote the famous last word of the film, "Huh?"
The "more falcony" new bird, to our eyes, resembles Stephen Colbert's angry eagle -- not the formerly San Francisco-based baby bald eagle named after Colbert, but the screecher from the Colbert Report credits.
We'll set aside the question of realism -- leave that to the Audobon Society. And the new Falcon is fiercer, perhaps, like the Colbert eagle. But let's not kid ourselves: updating the Falcon itself is as bad an idea as colorizing -- or, no wait, as remaking the film (which Hollywood will surely do one of these days, no doubt). Let's have a contest: what fiercer, more realistic actor should play each of these roles in the less pigeony remake of The Maltese Falcon?
Our suggestions after the jump.Chronicle