The gory image above is our first clear look at Laurie Strode, once again played by actress Scout Taylor-Compton, in H2: Halloween 2. Nice chipped teeth, eh? As you’ll recall, Strode is the (formerly) estranged sister of slasher Michael Myers, and according to horror visionaire Rob Zombie, “let’s just say this is the best part of her stay [at the hospital]. The worst is yet to come.” It will be interesting to see how Zombie’s sequel deviates from the original underrated 1981 follow-up, which was co-written and ghost-edited by The Shape’s creator, John Carpenter, and also set partially in a hospital to creepy effect. On his blog, Zombie has ended speculation about actor Malcolm McDowell reprising the pivotal character, Dr. Loomis, confirming that “he’s back and ready to deal with Big Mike.”As we’ve mentioned, H2 is due with the quickness this August and is now shooting in the state of Georgia.
After the jump: Hunter’s lengthy rant on the complete disappoinment and failure that was Marcus Nispel’s Friday the 13th, and Platinum Dunes’ annoying reign over horror icons vs. Rob Zombie’s polarizing Halloween and interpretation of Michael Myers. No friggin’ contest!
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Dimension Films has signed Rob Zombie to direct a sequel to his 2007 remake/prequel/reboot of Halloween. The studio is rushing H2 into production for a March start and a hopeful October 2009 release. The film will be a direct sequel to the Zombie’s 2007 film, and will not be a remake of 1981’s Halloween II.
I’m a fan of Zombie as a filmmaker, but found myself extremely disappointed with his version of Halloween. It was completely devoid of the thrills and suspense that made the original so great. Allowing the audience to see Mike Myers’ backstory is like showing who Darth Vader was before he had to wear the suit (and we all know how that turned out).
But, as much as I disliked Zombie’s Halloween, I have faith that Zombie could correct many of the problems in a sequel. I would assume that H2 won’t have the flashback/backstory elements, and will hopefully tell the story from the victims point of view, in affect, heightening the scare factor.
With one of the choicest “stranded on an island with entertainment center” filmographies, genre or otherwise, director John Carpenter is without a doubt a fave here at Slashfilm. Next month, the man himself will be on hand for two out of four nights to wax awesome on his various ’80s era classics at a film festival presented by non-profit American Cinematheque (nice effort!) and Santa Monica’s Aero Theater. Unfortunately, They Live (probably my fave of his) is not being shown, but one really can’t moan the slightest about such a rare opportunity. Here’s the schedule…
Friday, June 13th, 7:30 p.m.
The Thing and The Fog
Carpenter will discuss films between showings
Saturday, June 14th, 7:30 p.m.
Escape From New York and Escape From L.A.
Carpenter will discuss films between showings
Sunday, June 15th, 7:30 p.m.
Halloween and Christine (no speaker, but how sick is this double feature!?)
Wednesday, June 18th, 7:30 pm.
Big Trouble in Little China and Assault on Precinct 13
AOP13‘s Austin Stoker will discuss between films
Hopefully, everyone reading this site has seen these films. If not, make like Chainsaw and Dave this summer and join the club. If you’ll be attending one or more of these screenings with Carpenter shoot us an email after with a report. For more info, go here.
Cinematical pointed me towards these really cool videos on YouTube by a 25-Year-Old freelance editor nicknamed barringer82, who has edited together a few compilation music videoes of his favorite directors. The Paul Thomas Anderson one is definitely worth a watch, especially if you’re a dan of his films. Check them out after the jump.
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The critics and fans pretty much hated Rob Zombie’s Halloween remake, so it makes us wonder why Zombie didn’t take his own advice. The following quote comes from ArrowintheHead. Apparently Rob Zombie said the following quote in a 2002 interview.
“I feel it’s the worst thing any filmmaker can do. I actually got a call from my agent and they asked me if I wanted to be involved in a remake of CHAINSAW. I said no fucking way! Those movies are perfect — you’re only going to make yourself look like an asshole by remaking them. Go remake something that’s a piece of shit and make it good. Like with my movie I have elements of CHAINSAW in it because I love that movie so much, but I wouldn’t dare want to “remake” it. It’s like a band trying to be another band.”
Halloween is raking in the cash at the box office, and lead to Zombie’s two picture deal with Dimension Films. So to be fair, it was a good business move. But I think that Zombie’s quote above speaks more towards the creative nature of a remake than the business nature. So is Zombie a hypocrite?
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Rob Zombie has signed a two picture deal with Dimension Films, Halloween has already broken the Labor Day weekend record (aiming to take $32 million) ,well over the film’s estimated $15 million budget (despite god awful reviews from both fans and critics). But the question now becomes, will they make a sequel (And if so, will it be called Halloween 2, Halloween 10, or something else?)?
Weinstein Company head Bob Weinstein tells Reuters:
“I never say never never … but it would have to be something very, very different.”
With the re-envisioning / remake set to make 80+ million domestically, god knows how much worldwide, and even more on home video, I can’t see how Bob Weinstein won’t be able to find “something very, very different.” In Hollywood, it’s money (not ideas or story) that talks. Another question might be, does Rob Zombie have any interest in returning for a sequel. My quick guess is, probably not.
Michael Myers has returned from the dead to slaughter all box office competition. The all-new MGM/Weinstein version of HALLOWEEN has exploded for an estimated $10.5M on Friday, and it’s headed for a 3-day of $30M and a spectacular 4-day Labor Day weekend of $35.775M.
The success isn’t a complete surprise. Director Rob Zombie has scored successes with low budget slasher flicks HOUSE OF 1,000 CORPSES ($12.6M domestic) and THE DEVIL’S REJECTS ($17M cume), and, after seeing the heavy metal rocker’s version of the 1978 John Carpenter classic, Bob and Harvey Weinstein signed Zombie to a 2-picture deal. Plus, as I reported in my Final Weekend Tracking column, HALLOWEEN opened with Total Awareness of 82% in the industry’s audience tracking along with 36% Definite Interest and a First Choice of 13%. I suggested that this could be a 4-quadrant hit since it opened the day with an 11% First Choice with Males 25 Plus and an 10% First Choice with Females Plus. I wrote that, “There will be a wave of nostalgia, but it won’t be a tsunami.” I predicted $25M+, but there is now a tsunami warning in effect.
HALLOWEEN will easily become the all-time #1 4-day Labor Day weekend champion, but who could have guessed that it would come in 44% above previous record-holder Transporter 2?
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Much of the horror community theorized that The Weinstein Company forced Halloween director Rob Zombie to film a series of reshoots. Zombie has disputed this claim on his blog, and now the musician turned horror director tells MTV about the alternative ending that could have been, and the real reason for the reshoots.
“And the weirdest thing about movies is it’s all planned out, but you just don’t know. Sometimes, things that you really think will work work, and sometimes they’re like ‘eh’,” said Zombie. “We were kind of rushed because, filming in Pasadena, it’s like 11:00 and – boom! – they shut you downâ€¦the cops would step in front of the cameras,” Zombie told us. “We were shut down and I thought ‘Well, maybe we have it.’ Then I started editing, and it didn’t feel like I had the end of the movie. Luckily, I had the luxury of going back.”
The original ending came after Myers reached into Loomis’ car and pulls out Laurie Strode. Sheriff Brackett and several other policemen pull up in their cars. Loomis attempted to talk to Michael, urging the cops to hold their fire. He blamed himself for Michael’s madness, and convinced Myers to drop the knife and release Laurie. Loomis embraces Laurie as Myers takes a step forward and the police unleash reactionary gunfire. The old ending will be included on the eventual special edition DVD release.
“Now by the end of the movie, on those final frames you’re going to think ‘Wow, that is Michael’s sister,” Zombie said of the new finale. “The other way, it was more like she was a victim being rescued. Now, she becomes her own person.”
Also of note, HorrorMovieADay took a look at the differences between the workprint that leaked online last week, and the theatrical version of the film. Here are some of the interesting bits:
- In the workprint, there is an additional scene of young Michael with Deborah at the institution, where he expresses his need to “get out of here”. When he learns he cannot leave, he says “Then I have nothing left to say.”
- In the workprint, an orderly and his friend harass and then rape a female inmate in Michael’s room. Michael ignores them until they begin playing with his masks (this pays off the line about him not liking it when people touch his things). He kills them both, gets their keys, and escapes. This also explains why Michael would kill someone who is seen as his friend in the scenes prior. This gives him a moralistic reason to be killed.
- When the nurse looks at the photo of Michael and “Boo”, there is an additional line where she alludes to Michael being ugly. This provides more of a motive for her killing than is present in the theatrical version.
- The Workprint showed the scene where Michael finds and removes the tombstone in the graveyard.
- Bob’s death is completely different. In the workprint, he is killed in his van when he goes out to get beer. In the theatrical, he is killed in the exact same way he was killed in the 1978 film.
- In the theatrical print, Loomis buys a gun, the scene where Brackett explains how he knows who Laurie Strode’s real family is (the workprint never explained how she came to be with that family or how Loomis would know where to find her), and the whole sequence where Loomis runs up to the House at the end (ie the new ending).
Why exactly would anyone want to remake a classic film? With so much to live up to, times five, due to the time tested nostalgia factor, there is almost no conceivable way you can trump the expectations. But if there was one person that I would trust to remake Halloween, it would probably be Rob Zombie. House of 1,000 Corpses and The Devil’s Rejects were a call back to the classic horror films of the 1970’s. It’s almost like Zombie, and his collected crew, are able to channel Tobe Hooper and the directors of that era. It’s more about mood than anything else. It’s that creepy unsettling feeling that you feel. A mixture of the set design, camera direction, casting, and soundtrack. This is why I knew Rob Zombie would scare the living hell out of us again, with one of horror’s classic characters. But I was wrong.
Zombie’s re-imagining of the John Carpenter 1978 classic went wrong in conception. The concept is simple, and a good one at first glance: Who is Michael Myers? We got a small glimpse of his childhood origin in the original film, but Zombie’s vision was to expand upon this mythology. Because Myers was the key to the first film’s success. Sure, you had Jamie Lee Curtis’ lungs, and Carpenter’s now classic score, but the kids came because of the man in the mask.
In Zombie’s new film we learn why Myers wears the mask, and we even learn why he doesn’t speak. We learn a lot about Michael Myers, and that is problem #1. The reason why we enjoyed his character in the original was because he was such a mystery. It was what we didn’t know, what we didn’t see, what we were forced to make up in our heads.
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