Earlier today, MTV released four new photos from Drag Me to Hell, Sam Raimi’s return to the horror film genre. For one reason or another, we’ve barely covered this film on /Film, so with Halloween on the horizon, I thought now might be as good of time as any other.
Co-written by Raimi with his brother Ivan, Drag Me to Hell tels the story of a young woman who isdesperate to break an evil curse. Alison Lohman stars as Christine Brown, “an ambitious L.A. loan officer with a charming boyfriend, professor Clay Dalton (Justin Long). Life is good until the mysterious Mrs. Ganush (Lorna Raver) arrives at the bank to beg for an extension on her home loan. Christine denies the extension to impress her boss, Mr. Jacks (David Paymer), shaming Mrs. Ganush and dispossessing her of her home. In retaliation, the old woman places the powerful curse of the Lamia on Christine, transforming her life into a living hell. Haunted by an evil spirit and misunderstood by a skeptical boyfriend, she seeks the aid of seer Rham Jas (Dileep Rao) to save her soul from eternal damnation. To help the shattered Christine return her life to normal, the psychic sets her on a frantic course to reverse the spell. As evil forces close in, Christine must face the unthinkable: how far will she go to break free of the curse?”
Raimi’s name will have me at the theater on opening night, but I’ve never been a fan of stories having to do with curses and such. And the set of photos released thus far look nothing beyond the average modern horror film.
Raimi describes the film as a chance to get back to his roots and make a small movie: “This script was one I wrote with my brother many years ago, but we couldn’t get the money to make it with the director we wanted at the time. I decided it would be a great change for me to get back to the basics of filmmaking, a chance to work with a smaller budget and challenge myself with the more old-fashioned ways — not being able to afford a crane every day, covering five or six pages of material every day, back to those basics of less luxurious filmmaking. I thought that would be refreshing.”
Head on over to MTV for Sam’s full interview, and click on the photos to above them in higher resolution on MTV. Drag Me To Hell hits theaters on May 29th 2009.
Posted on Monday, March 10th, 2008 by Hunter Stephenson
Peter emailed me the following question regarding the announcement that Justin Long will now star in Sam Raimi‘s Drag Me to Hell: How did a movie go from so much potential with a return to old form, an Oscar nominated actress [Ellen Page] attached, to a Justin Long movie? I have no idea, but I too would rather see Mr. PC star in Raimi’s first horror thriller in years than the baby-faced star of Jeepers Creepers, Drew Barrymore’s prolonged youth and Apple propaganda.
Long (Live Free of Die Hard) will star alongside Ellen Page’s lesser known replacement, actress Alison Lohman, who joined the film just days ago after Page bailed due to scheduling conflicts. Written by Raimi and his brother Ivan, not much is known about Drag Me to Hell except that it will follow the unfortunate recipient of a supernatural curse, it has an awesome title, and it harks back to Raimi’s Evil Dead salad days but with less gore and less Bruce Campbell.
Next up for Long is He’s Just Not That Into You. Make ’em swoon Long, make ’em swoon.
Discuss: What has more scary potential, Drag Me to Hell or Justin Long in a movie?
Posted on Tuesday, March 4th, 2008 by Hunter Stephenson
Blonds tells fewer blog jokes, it’s a fact, so maybe director Sam Raimi is onto something by casting actress Alison Lohman (Beowulf, Flicka) in the lead role formerly occupied by Ellen Page (Juno) in his upcoming horror thriller Drag Me to Hell.
Oscar nominee Page aborted the project days ago amid rumors that she was unhappy with the script by Raimi and his brother Ivan Raimi. There was also the trusty rumor that Page forever hisses at her agent anytime she hears the words “how about a horror movie, Ellen” post-Academy Awards. As our pub brothers at FirstShowing have pointed out, Variety reported on Sunday that the real reason might have been, yep, “scheduling differences” after all…
“We were racing to start production so that we could accommodate Ellen’s schedule,” Ghost House and Mandate said in a joint statement. “But like so many other productions trying to start before the potential SAG strike date, this one needed more time, and we had to push back the start of production.”
Indeed, the SAG strike is fast becoming the new “forgot my homework,” or, sure, WGA strike. Lohman, who is almost 30 but looks teenish, is of Irish descent, an environmentalist and I’m sure she can belt out a scream with the best of them. But I dunno, does she have the spark, that hamburger phone aura, that Page has?
Discuss: Page versus Loh(m)an. What difference does this play in your anticipation of Drag Me to Hell?
This past weekend we got the chance to speak with Alison Lohman about her upcoming film Game, which is written/directed by Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor (the madmen behind Crank).
“I’m doing a movie now called Game with Gerard Butler. I get to ride a motorcycle. It’s like Sin City, it’s set in the future. It’s a sci-fi thriller about convicts who become the players in a video game, and the players are the ones who control them. And if they win 30 games, they are exonerated, and get out free. The prison system is overloaded so they have to find a way to fund it.Â This is set in the future and the healthcare system is collapsing, so they have to find another way… “
Butler’s character is on his 28th game and is eager to get back to his family.
“I play this revolutionary chick. She’s a vigilante, part of this underground group that is trying desperately to save the world from debaucherous. She’s an idealist. I help [Gerry], but he doesn’t know what is going on and I inform him that he’s in prison in the video game. I start shooting in two weeks in Albuquerque New Mexico. I just decided that I was going to do this about a week ago, so right now I’m just scrambling to learn my lines.”
The film will be shot for 55 days in and around Albuquerque from November 5 through February 5. Game will hit theaters in December 2008. Alison Lohman appears in Beowulf, which hits theaters on November 16th.