1974’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is so singular that even original director Tobe Hooper didn’t try to replicate it. His 1986 sequel deliberately veered toward splatter comedy, eschewing scares in favor of guffaws. Why try to top what is already perfect? Why recreate pure cinematic alchemy, a movie that feels like it only works because it was made by the right people at the right time in the right place?
Three official sequels, one reboot, one prequel to the reboot, and one movie that claims to be a direct sequel to the original (while ignoring all continuity) later, we’ve arrived at Leatherface, a film about the early days of the skin-wearing, flesh-eating psychopath of the original movie. But before you roll your eyes too hard, note that this is the Hollywood debut of Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury, two directors whose past work has rightfully put them on the radar of horror fans all over the world.
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The 2010 remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street was a disappointment for most Freddy Krueger fans. Even though the Platinum Dunes film made $32.9 million its opening weekend — which gave rise to discussions regarding a 3D sequel — it never led to another installment starring Jackie Earle Haley (Watchmen). In fact, we recently heard about another A Nightmare on Elm Street remake in the works.
But before acclaimed music video director Samuel Bayer signed up for the 2010 picture, Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo (Inside) came close to directing the project, which they envisioned as “a twisted version of The Goonies.”
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Alexandre Bustillo and Julien Maury turned heads and stomachs with their intense debut feature Inside, but their follow-up films Livid and Among the Living didn’t reach quite the same audience. The two have flirted with other properties over the years since Inside debuted — most notably, they were attached to a Hellraiser film for some time, and there was a point where they might have directed the Nightmare on Elm Street re-do — but never signed a deal.
Now they have chosen a next film, and it is one with a long genre history. Bustle and Maury are reportedly set to be the Leatherface directors, so they’ll explore the origin story of the boogeyman of the Texas Chain Saw Massacre films. Read More »
The horror anthology V/H/S did well enough that a sequel went into production pretty fast, and you can already see the red-band trailer for V/H/S/2 from Magnet. Now another Magnet-released anthology, The ABCs of Death, is also going to be followed by a sequel.
The hook for The ABCs of Death was that the film featured 25 directors (and a 26th crowd-sourced entry) making short films based around a single letter. The sequel will take the same approach, and as with the first film the hook isn’t the concept, but the people bringing it to life. The new crew includes animator Bill Plympton, Day of the Beast and The Last Circus director Álex de la Iglesia, and Room 237 director Rodney Ascher. More participants in the gruesome sequel are listed below. Read More »
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Dimension‘s remake of Clive Barker‘s original Hellraiser has been pushed back from its scheduled September 5, 2008 release to an undetermined date in 2009. According to Bloody Disgusting, the Weinstein Co. and Dimension were not popping bottles of Cristal over the script by French director team Alexander Bustillo and Julien Maury (Inside), though the duo are still attached to bring Pinhead the $60 million box office grosses he craves.
Unlike Halloween and Michael Myers, I think it’s fair to say that most people can recognize Pinhead, but far, far less have ever viewed a Hellraiser film. The character’s highest grossing theatrical flick was 1996’s Hellraiser: Bloodline, the fourth installment, which cha-chinged $16 million in ticket sales. I count eight total films total, though several have been designated, unsurprisingly, straight to DVD. Truth is, these movies are a little icky like the word “moist.”
There’s still no word on whether the actor better known as Pinhead, Doug Bradley, will be back. Bradley ties Robert Englund for playing the same horror character eight consecutive times in a film. Who’s going to stop him now? Johnny Depp?
French filmmakers Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo have been brought on to write and direct a Hellraiser remake for Dimension Films. The French duo just made a film called Inside, which AintItCool calls “one of the goriest and unflinchingly intense horror films that screened at FANTASTIC FEST.”
The filmmakers say they have the blessing of Clive Barker (who directed the original based on his acclaimed novella The Hellbound Heart) to reappropriate his story and also had a playful message to any horror fans that were ready to trash the idea of a remake, “No tears, please; it’s a waste of good remaking!”
I think Hellraiser is ripe for a remake. I know as a child, I was always scared of pinhead, and the prospect of the franchise scaring a whole new generation of children kind of excites me. However, it should also be noted that Dimension was the studio behind Rob Zombie’s Halloween, which many agree should have never happened. Let’s hope this turns out better.