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Big Breaking Halloween Movie News from John Carpenter and Blumhouse

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When a select few horror outlets were invited to the Blumhouse offices for a super-secret announcement, we really couldn’t guess what the news might be. It could be anything from the resurrection of Vincent Price to them telling us there will be a sequel to Creep. Honestly, either one of those would have made us happy.

But they made us ecstatic with the news that John Carpenter has teamed up with Blumhouse to do an all-new Halloween movie, with a target release date of October 2017.

After we assembled in the Blumhouse screening room, Jason Blum took the stage (well, he stood in front of the screen). “There are only a few movies out there that really got people ‘into’ scary movies in the first place, or maybe just movies in general. And we are about to embark on a journey to make one of those movies.

He checked the time and teased, “A special guest is coming soon. First, these are my partners from Miramax, and this is Malek… he and his family have been involved with this movie for a long, long time. Malek has been guiding this franchise forever…

Um, that’s Malak Akkad, whose father produced the first Halloween film in 1978. Malek himself is a producer best known for Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998), the Halloween remake (2007), and Halloween II (2009).

We’ve heard rumors here and there about a Halloween reboot, and in fact we asked him earlier this year for confirmation of reports about a TV series based on Halloween, and Malek emphatically said, “No.” But he knew all along this big news was just around the corner and hiding in the closet!

When Jason said Malek has been with Halloween forever, Malek said, “Well hardly forever, since I was only 9 when the first movie was made. But for a long time, and I can honestly say I am most excited about this grouping here – to be working with this great team at Miramax and Blumhouse and Jason. This is something I think that’s really going to excite the fans immensely. And yes, it will be named Halloween.

Jason added, “All of us felt that the next Halloween movie shouldn’t exist without John Carpenter. We were saying, when we were first talking about it, ‘We’ve gotta do this with the guy who started it all,’ and… here he is, right here!

The room erupted into genuine applause as the true master of horror, John Carpenter, entered the screening room, bag of popcorn in hand.

Jason was applauding, too. “Here he is, the godfather. He’s going to produce, and hopefully score… he drives a hard bargain but I am a good negotiator, so hopefully he is going to score it too. He’s going to godfather us, be involved with this movie creatively, and in the initial few conversations that we’ve had with directors, they’ve felt the same way we did: No one wanted to do this without John. So we are real excited he’s here. He is the main attraction and the main event.

John was his usual unruffled self. “Hi, guys! What’s happening?

Oh, nothing. THERE’S JUST GOING TO BE A BRAND-NEW HALLOWEEN MOVIE!!!

John took a bite of popcorn and said, “So… I decided, after bitching for years and years about Halloween sequels, I would come aboard and shepherd this thing. I’ll help, support the director, and since I’m here with Malek Akkad, and the horror superstar Jason Blum, what could go wrong? So, we’re going to give it a try.” John said his son Cody will work with him, if he does indeed do the score for this fresh Halloween movie.

We wondered if this flick would be a new story, a remake, prequel, or sequel? “We can’t tell you yet… because we don’t know,” John said. “What I can tell you is, it’ll be a movie.” Yup. Cue the rim-shot. “You know what? We’re probably going to go back to the original tradition that we started. It’s kind of gone astray. I feel like the remakes maybe went off somewhere that I didn’t want them to go.” And somewhere, Rob Zombie is wiping his tears with $100 bills.

John then summed up feelings fans have had for years. “Michael Myers is not a character. He is a force of nature. He is not a person. He’s part supernatural, part human. He’s like the wind, an evil wind. If you start straying away from that, and you get into explaining, then you’ve lost. So hopefully we can guide it back in the original direction.

Jason said, “I think we want to take it back to basics and not get into too much backstory.” As for who may be tapped to direct, it’s too early to say. “We’ll more than likely work with a director that’s got a couple of movies under their belt. Not sure, yet.” Single film? Franchise? “We’ll see,” said John.

Turns out, John didn’t need much convincing to come back. “Malek and I have known each other for a while, and when he said why don’t you come aboard, I met with Jason. I like say, he’s a horror superstar. I just met him two weeks ago.”

Jason added, “But we’ve been talking for about a year, with Miramax and Akkad.

John soon got antsy. “You know guys, I missed a basketball game to be here,” he joked. But the godfather of the reboot did leave us with this enticing tidbit: “The biggest challenge is to be true to the original spirit of the movie. Don’t get carried away. Tell a simple story. Tell it right. The original Halloween was made for very little money and it was a little, scary tale. That’s what we should be doing.

John Carpenter Halloween

L-R: Zanne Devine, Malek Akkad, John Carpenter, Jason Blum, David Thwaites

From the Press Release:
John Carpenter, the multiple award-winning and legendary filmmaker and creator of the original Halloween films, will return to the franchise as executive producer on a new production of the iconic horror movie, it was jointly announced today by MIRAMAX® and Trancas International Films — MIRAMAX® and Blumhouse Productions will co-finance development and production, with Malek Akkad serving as producer under his Trancas banner and Jason Blum producing for Blumhouse. MIRAMAX®, which holds worldwide distribution rights, will determine its theatrical distribution partner at a future date.

The HALLOWEEN film franchise that was started in part by Carpenter and Moustapha Akkad in 1978 has spawned ten films generating a total of nearly $400 million in worldwide box office.

John Carpenter said: “38 years after the original Halloween I’m going to help to try to make the 10th sequel the scariest of them all.”

Malek Akkad said: “Trancas International is thrilled to be teaming up with Miramax on Halloween, one of the most enduring horror franchises in film. We are also very excited to be working with Jason Blum and the whole team at Blumhouse. Together, along with the return of legendary filmmaker John Carpenter, we are eager to make a film that will be a milestone in the franchise’s legacy and that will excite the fans, young and old.”

Zanne Devine, MIRAMAX’s EVP Film & Television, said: “Malek Akkad’s legacy with the Halloween franchise accompanied by Blumhouse’s unprecedented talent in the horror genre lays the foundation of a formidable team to create the next chapter of this iconic fan favorite. Having John Carpenter godfather the reboot of the iconic franchise he helped create brings it full circle. We couldn’t be in better company bringing Halloween back to the big screen.”

Jason Blum said: “Halloween is one of those milestone films that inspired everyone at our company to get into the world of scary movies. The great Malek Akkad and John Carpenter have a special place in the hearts of all genre fans, and we are so excited that Miramax brought us together. We cannot wait to find and collaborate with the right filmmaker to give Halloween fans the movie they deserve.”

David Thwaites will oversee the reboot for MIRAMAX® with Carpenter and the companies planning to immediately go out to filmmakers and fast-track the project.

The Academy Award®-winning John Carpenter has written, directed, composed, and/or edited over 20 films over the course of his career. An international household name, he is probably best known for his iconic features Halloween, The Thing, The Fog, and Big Trouble in Little China, to name a few. As a musician, Carpenter kicked off his world tour in Los Angeles this month, featuring songs from his Lost Themes and Lost Themes II albums – which he recorded with his son, Cody Carpenter. The 30+-city tour ends in Paris late November. He is repped by APA and Stankevich Law.

myers

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Watching A Quiet Place’s John Krasinski Get Scared by Freddy on Ellen Will Brighten Your Day

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I was just researching the new Platinum Dunes horror-thriller A Quiet Place and stumbled across this video.

It features the film’s writer-director and star John Krasinski getting scared by a man dressed as Freddy Krueger on Ellen.

It’s as much fun as it sounds, and I’m sure it will make your day. It sure as hell just brightened mine.

Give it a watch below and then let us know what you think!

John Krasinski directs the film which will be the opening night entry at this year’s SXSW festival in Austin, TX. Emily Blunt stars alongside Krasinski, Noah Jupe, and Millicent Simmonds.

It will then open wide on April 6.

Synopsis:

In the modern horror thriller A Quiet Place, a family of four must navigate their lives in silence after mysterious creatures that hunt by sound threatens their survival. If they hear you, they hunt you.

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Interview: Director Jeff Burr Revisits Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III

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Director Jeff Burr was gracious enough to give us here at Dread Central a few minutes of his time to discuss the Blu-ray release of his 1990 film Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III. Recently dropped on 2/13, the movie has undergone the white-glove treatment, and he was all-too-happy to bring us back to when the film was being shot…and eventually diced thanks to the MPAA – so settle in, grab a cold slice of bloody meat, read on and enjoy!

DC: First off – congrats on seeing the film get the treatment it deserves on Blu-ray – you excited about it?

JB: Yeah, I’m really happy that it’s coming out on Blu-ray, especially since so many people bitch and moan about the death of physical media, and this thing made the cut, and it’s great for people to be able to see probably the best-looking version of it since we saw it in the lab back in 1989.

DC: Take us back to when you’d first gotten the news that you were tabbed to be the man to direct the third installment in this franchise – what was your first order of business?

JB: It was fairly condensed pre-production for me, and there really wasn’t a whole lot of time to think about the import or the greatness of it – it was basically just roll up your sleeves and go. It was a bit disappointing because a lot of times in pre-production you have the opportunity to dream what could be – casting had already been done, but certain decisions hadn’t been made yet. A very condensed pre-production, but exciting as hell, for sure! (laughs)

DC: R.A. Mihailoff in the role of Leatherface – was it the decision from the get-go to have him play the lead role?

JB: No – I totally had someone else in mind, even though R.A. had done a role in my student film about 7 years earlier, and we’d kept in touch, and I’d felt strongly because I’d gotten to know him a bit that Gunnar Hansen should have come back and played Leatherface, which would have given a bit more legitimacy to this third movie. He and I talked, and he had some issues with the direction that it was going – he really wanted to be involved, and it ended up boiling down to a financial thing, and it wasn’t outrageous at all – it wasn’t like he asked for the moon, but the problem was that New Line refused to pay it, categorically. I think the line producer at the time was more adamant about it than anyone, and Mike DeLuca was one of the executives on the movie, and he was really the guy that was running this, in a creative sense. I made my case for Gunner to both he and the line producer, and they flat out refused to pay him what he was asking, so after that was a done “no deal” I decided that R.A would be the right guy to step into the role. Since New Line was the arbiter of the film, he had to come in and audition for the part, and he impressed everyone and got the part. He did an absolutely fantastic job – such a joy to work with, and he was completely enthusiastic about everything.

DC: Let’s talk about Viggo Mortenson, and with this being one of his earliest roles – did you know you had something special with this guy on your set?

JB: Here’s the thing – you knew he was talented, and I’d seen him in the movie Prison way back in the early stages of development and was very impressed with him, and he was one of those guys that I think we were really lucky to get him on board with us. I really believe that The Indian Runner with he and directed by Sean Penn was the movie that truly made people stand up and notice his work. Every person in this cast was one hundred percent into this film and jumped in no questions asked when it was time to roll around in the body pits.

DC: It’s no secret about the amount of shit that the MPAA put you through in order to get this film released – can you expound on that for a minute?

JB: At the time, I believe it was a record amount of times we had to go back to the MPAA after re-cutting the film – I think it was 11 times that we went back. What a lot of people don’t realize is after Bob Shaye (President of New Line) had come into the editing room and he thought that it was very disturbing, and cut out some stuff himself. He thought that it would have been banned in every country, and it was banned in a lot of countries but so were the previous two. It was definitely on the verge of being emasculated before even being submitted to the MPAA, and I would have thought just a few adjustments here and there – maybe a couple of times to go back…but eleven? It was front-page news in the trade papers then, and I think that the overall tone of the film was looked at as being nasty. The previous film (Chainsaw 2) had actually gone out unrated, and with the first film being so notorious, I think it was a combination of all of that, and now even the most unrated version of this would be rated R – that’s how far the pendulum has swung in the other direction.

DC: Looking back at the film after all this time – what would be one thing that you’d change about the movie?

JB: Oh god – any film director worth his salt would look back at any of their films and want to change stuff up, and with this being 28 years old, I can look back and say “oh yeah, I’d change this, this and this!” You grow and learn over the course of your time directing, and this was my third movie and my first without producers that I had known, so the main thing that I’d do today would be to make it a bit more politically savvy. I had always thought that they wanted me to put my vision on this film, and that wasn’t necessarily the case, so maybe I’d navigate those political waters a little better.

DC: Last thing, Jeff – what’s keeping you busy these days? Any projects to speak of?

JB: Oh yeah, I’ve got a couple of movies that I’m working on – I’m prepping a horror movie right now, and then I’ve got a comedy film that I’m doing after that. You haven’t heard the last of me! I’ve had a real up and down (mostly down) career, but I still love it – it’s what I love to do, and it’s still great that after 28 years people still want to talk about this movie, and are still watching it – that’s the greatest gift you can get, and I thank everyone that’s seen it and talked about it over all these years.

BUY IT NOW!

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Werewolf Short Werehouse Coming this Halloween

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Director Daniel Mark Young, whom you may remember for the horror shorts Stranger, Night Terrors, and Run, is currently raising funds on Kickstarter to complete his latest ambitious project, the werewolf short Werehouse. Like most of Young’s films, it will be penned by his frequent writing partner James Craigie.

As its name suggests, Werehouse will be a werewolf tale set inside, you’ve guessed it, a warehouse. A group of students seek refuge in the storage facility to escape from a violent protest, but they find that they may be in even greater danger after discovering that a ravenous beast may be trapped inside with them.

The short will star Amy Tyger, Harriet Rees, Oliver Roy, and Derek Nelson.

Werehouse will be shot in black and white, although the filmmakers are using a special technique to isolate the color red in order to highlight the copious amounts of blood shown onscreen. Should the funding be successful, filming is expected to commence in April, and the film will be released on Amazon Instant Video this Halloween.

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