Eli Roth interview

Eli Roth has never thought of himself as a horror director, so the Hostel and Cabin Fever director’s first PG-rated and kids-friendly movie, The House with a Clock in Its Walls, isn’t that surprising of a choice for the filmmaker. As Roth sees it, his previous movies led him to directing Amblin’s adaptation of John Bellairs‘ novel, published in 1973. This is exactly the sort of lavish and old school spectacle he’s always dreamed about making.

While obviously tamer, The House with a Clock in Its Walls has the director’s dark, sometimes slapstick sense of humor as well as sequences that scream horror. Whether with a rotting corpse, evil pumpkins, or a hideous creature in the woods at night, Roth gives younger viewers enough credit to have fun with the scares. In addition to paying respect to his audience, the director told us about working with producer Steven Spielberg, his love of Amblin and Gremlins, influences and references, and showing the almighty Cate Blanchett firing a laser gun/magical umbrella.

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House With a Clock in Its Walls Eli Roth

Kid horror has to be one of the most thankless subgenres in film. Very few horror films aimed toward children succeed at the box office, and they’re rarely distinguished by critical regard or earn the initial respect of MPAA-obsessed genre fans, often having to build a cult audience over the course of years or even decades.

So it’s something of a noble endeavor for a filmmaker to embrace the kid horror label in the absence of popularity, critical acceptance and financial gain. It feels like a labor of love, an act of true inspiration, even if high-maintenance horror fans call it selling out.

Eli Roth – whose previous outings like Hostel and Green Inferno have earned extremely vigorous R-ratings – is taking on that tricky endeavor with his latest, the Amblin Entertainment adaptation of John Bellairs‘ The House with a Clock in Its Walls. Why do it?

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the house with a clock in its walls review

Eli Roth delivers his first PG-rated film with The House with a Clock in Its Walls, a spooky, amusing horror story for younger viewers. While there’s plenty of gothic atmosphere, and two delightful performances from Jack Black and Cate Blanchett, Roth never quite figures out how to make The House with a Clock in Its Walls tick.

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the house with a clock in its walls early buzz

Eli Roth, splatter-horror filmmaker extraordinaire, directing a kid’s movie headlined by Cate Blanchett and Jack Black? With a team like that, how could The House with a Clock in its Walls possibly turn out? Apparently, exactly how you’d expect it to turn out, according to critics.

Early buzz of the fantasy film adapting John Bellairs’ 1973 children’s novel of the same name says that The House with a Clock in its Walls has all the hallmarks of its family-fantasy genre and none of the hallmarks of director Roth’s gory repertoire. But that’s fine, because with an enthusiastic Blanchett and Black leading the fantasy film, The House with a Clock in its Walls is perfectly attuned to its target demographic — and not much else.

Find out what critics have to say in our round-up of The House with a Clock in its Walls early buzz.

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Thriller 3D Teaser

At the end of last month, we found out that a 3D version of Michael Jackson‘s iconic music video Thriller would be coming to theaters around the United States and Canada for the first time ever, thanks to the folks at IMAX. Now we have a teaser for the big screen debut of the music video that changed MTV forever. Read More »

House With a Clock in Its Walls Eli Roth

Eli Roth isn’t anyone’s idea of a family filmmaker, and yet the director of Cabin Fever has a new PG-rated adventure hitting theaters soon. The House With a Clock in Its Walls is Roth’s first non-R-rated movie, adapted from children’s book of the same name. So how did the guy who made Hostel end up making a family-friendly film? In a new interview, Roth says the progression was natural, and that Clock in Its Walls harkens back to old school Amblin movies.

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thriller 3d imax

There’s no better celebration of Michael Jackson‘s birthday than the — ahem — thrilling news that his iconic short film that revolutionized the music video landscape is coming to theaters. Right on the heels of the Michael Jackson Diamond Celebration, IMAX announced that Michael Jackson’s Thriller 3D will head to IMAX 3D theaters for the first time ever.

But a word of warning: the remastered short film will only be in theaters for one week before it heads back to the grave.

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The House With a Clock in Its Walls Trailer

A new House with a Clock in Its Walls trailer is here, and it’s full of charming, spooky fun. The adaptation of John Bellairs‘ book hails from filmmaker Eli Roth, and stars Jack Black and Cate Blanchett. Watch The House With a Clock in Its Walls trailer below.

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Who’d have thought it would be Death Wish director and horror maestro Eli Roth who would be reviving that good ‘ol Steven Spielberg magic?

But he seems to be doing just that in the new fantasy-horror film The House with a Clock in Its Walls, an adaptation of a beloved, spine-tingling gothic children’s novel. And based on the first The House with a Clock in Its Walls trailer, the movie is rife with fantastical elements, awe-inspiring effects, and delightfully witchy performances from Jack Black and Cate Blanchett.
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Eli Roth Amblin Project

Hostel and Knock Knock director Eli Roth now has two projects in the works at Amblin Entertainment. The newly announced pic, The House With A Clock In Its Walls, will star Jack Black and be produced by James Vanderbilt (Zodiac). It’s an adaptation of John Bellairs and illustrator Edward Gorey‘s 1973 novel, which is a part of a 12-part series.

Below, learn more about the new Eli Roth Amblin project.

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