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Six, Tom (The Human Centipede Trilogy)

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Director Tom Six Talks The Human Centipede TrilogyThere’s bold. There’s audacious. Then there’s The Human Centipede. I first saw director Tom Six’s award-winning body horror flick The Human Centipede (First Sequence) last October during the 2009 Screamfest Film Festival. Sitting inside the packed theater, you could hear the nervous rumblings throughout the room of those who were unsure of what they were about to see.

After The Human Centipede finished some 90 minutes later, the chatter broke out again, and as this writer spent a good 10 minutes gathering her senses (Writer’s Note: For the record, I am generally not squeamish and can watch the opening of Saving Private Ryan without blinking an eye at the violence) because there just weren’t words to accurately describe what I had just seen.

Now that IFC Films is revving up to unleash The Human Centipede into theaters on April 30th, I jumped at the opportunity to speak with writer/director Six and find out just what kind of guy would make such a fantastically disturbing film and what he has planned for the next two installments.

Surprisingly enough, the idea for The Human Centipede (First Sequence) (review here) came out of a joke that Six made during a normal conversation with friends.

Even though Human Centipede started off from a joke, the more I thought about it, I realized that it would make a really great movie,” explained Six. “It wasn’t like anything I had seen ever before. I had made three Dutch language films up to that point and knew that for my first international film it had to be horror. This was the perfect kind of horror film, I thought.

With the horror genre, there are hardly any limits as a storyteller. You can really let your fantasies go to some dark places and just go wild. If you have a good concept for a horror movie, you don’t need big stars either, like they did with Saw or The Blair Witch Project. The story itself becomes the focus if you do your job right,” Six added.

The Human Centipede (First Sequence) concept sketch

With the script of The Human Centipede done, Six was ready to assemble his cast. For the role of Dr. Heiter (the film’s villain whose master plan it is to create the first human centipede out of three people joined at the front and back), the writer/director knew exactly who he saw in the role before he had even finished writing the project.

Six said, “When I was creating the Dr. Heiter character, I immediately thought of Dieter Laser. I watched so many films of his since he’s been working for 40 years and knew that I was not going to be happy if anyone else played that role. I flew to Berlin to meet with Dieter, and luckily, he loved what I wanted to do with the film. It was a role that I think he was born to play.

For the roles of Lindsay (Ashley C. Williams) and Jenny (Ashlynn Yennie), the two young Americans who are captured by Dr. Heiter so that he can fulfill his madman dreams, the director found a little more resistance when he arrived in New York to do casting.

When we went to New York to cast those roles of the girls, I brought with me the sketches of what the human centipede looked like, and it was a very decisive experience for the actresses,” explained Six. “Most of the women immediately freaked out at the idea and didn’t even audition for us.

The smart ones stayed because they saw the opportunity in front of them to try something completely different. We needed to find beautiful girls who weren’t afraid to get ugly for us, and both Ashley and Ashlynn pulled it off better than I could have imagined. They worked hard for those parts, both physically and emotionally. They weren’t easy roles,” Six added.

The Human Centipede (First Sequence) concept sketch

One of the more groan-inducing moments in the film (for me, at least) wasn’t necessarily the surgical sequences, but rather when Dr. Heiter comes into the room with his three unwilling specimens and proceeds to explain the surgical techniques of the human centipede using very crude drawings. I spoke to Six about that scene in particular and what made it so impactful.

The idea for this scene came from this real fear of doctors that everyone has. I always thought about surgeons who come in before they do surgery and create the drawings for their patients. I don’t know if doctors realize how terrifying that can be on a patient, so I wanted to incorporate that into the film. I wanted Dr. Heiter’s drawings to be simple and child-like almost but utterly gruesome when you look closer and realize what he’s explaining,” said Six.

Now with The Human Centipede (First Sequence) hitting theaters soon, Six is starting to gear up for production on the sequel, known as The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence). I talked with Six to find out just where he could possibly go this time that he didn’t go for the first film. It turns out he has already dreamed up a ton of squirm-inducing moments for both the sequel and the final film of the trilogy as well.

When I was writing the first Human Centipede, I had so many more ideas that really pushed the envelope, actually way further than you see even in the first film, so I always intended for this to be a trilogy,” Six explained. “My goal was that the first film will get audiences used to the concept of a human centipede and prepares them for where everything goes in the next two.

The first film will seem like My Little Pony compared to what we do with the sequel. There will be a lot of black humor, and I’m excited as a director to see how far I can push audiences. We start shooting this June in London, and we’re looking to release the sequel before the end of the year if post-production goes well,” added Six.

The Human Centipede (First Sequence) concept sketch

Six went on to discuss his experiences the second time around with Human Centipede and just where they are in the pre-production phase, “We’ve finished casting for the second film. I can tell you that it was definitely easier to do casting this time around; the first time everyone thought we were insane. This time everyone wants to be a part of the human centipede. It’s pretty crazy!

When you make a sequel, you are very vulnerable as a director. That comes from your responsibility as a director to not disappoint your audience, especially that now there are more expectations. They’ve seen what you can do. My job is to work really hard to create something original and engaging. I think the next two Human Centipede films will completely blow people away. They won’t believe their eyes when I’m done with them,” added Six.

The Human Centipede (First Sequence) will be premiering On Demand and opening in New York with other cities to follow starting on April 30th courtesy of IFC.


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Jesper Kyd Returning to Score Vermintide 2

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From the cover of Kyd's first Vermintide OST

Get your headphones ready, Warhammer fans because State of Decay and Darksiders 2 composer Jesper Kyd is back to score the upcoming Warhammer title Vermintide 2! The game will be coming to PC and consoles early this year.

Kyd was inspired by Norse mythology, utilizing ancient tribal music as well as dark fantastical elements to build upon the acoustic soundscapes he composed for the first Vermintide game. Channeling his own Scandinavian roots, Kyd will blend Viking and Norse-inspired vocals with ritualistic percussion styles to create a unique soundtrack experience.

Three tracks from the score can be heard below.

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Like Me – Will You Like This Dystopian Thriller?

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Starring Addison Timlin, Ian Nelson, Larry Fessenden

Directed by Robert Mockler


While Like Me is not dystopian in the classic science-fiction sense, it does aptly put the downer vibe across. If the present is abysmal, then the future is downright hopeless. We learn this as we follow an unhinged teenage loner called Kiya (Addison Timlin) on a hollow crime spree that she broadcasts on social media. At first the world “likes” her—with the exception of YouTube rival Burt (Ian Nelson), who disdainfully denounces her viral videos—but pride goes before the fall, and Kiya’s descent is spectacular.

If you’ve peeped the trailer for Like Me, then you’re probably expecting a horror movie. I mean, they’ve got the requisite menacing masked baddie and they’ve got genre icon Larry Fessenden in a major role—those are a couple of the key ingredients, right? Yes they are, but this simmering, shimmering stew of Natural Born Killers, Excision and King Kelly, it boils down to a whole lotta nothing. Like Me is sort of a drama, kind of a road trip flick, and almost a thriller. It succeeds at none yet does stand on its own as a compelling collection of cool visuals and pertinent performances. But is that enough?

While Kiya is a compelling character on the surface, there’s barebones beneath. Sure, she’s a Millennial mind-fed on random online clips and snappy soundbites—but what turned her into a psychopath? Was she born that way? Is social media to blame? We’ll never know, because not a hint is given. I don’t mind ambiguity, but even a morsel would have been welcome in this case. As Kiya ramps up her reckless exhibitionistic extremes, the stakes are never raised. In the end, who cares? Maybe that’s the point.

A word of warning: If you plan on watching this movie while chomping snacks…don’t. There is stomach-turning scene after vomit-inducing scene of orgiastic easting, binging, and the inevitable purging. I’m sure it’s all metaphorical mastication, a cutting comment on disposable consumption. I get it. But I don’t wanna look at it, again and again and again. Having said that, Like Me is an experimental film and in its presentation of such grotesquery, it’s quite accomplished. Montages, split-screens and jittered motions are scattered throughout, showing us all sorts of unpleasant things…Kudos to the editor.

I didn’t hate Like Me. But I do think one has to be in the mood for a movie such as this. It’s not an easy or entertaining watch, but it is a peculiar and thought-provoking one. There’s some style and mastery behind the camera, and I am curious to see what first-time writer-director Rob Mockler comes up with next.

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Last Toys on the Left

Funko Giving Jurassic Park the Pop! Treatment as Only They Can

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It is no secret we’re BIG fans of Funko’s Pop! Vinyl line here at DC HQ, and now they’ve announced a new series that has made our hearts just about burst… read on for a look at Pop! Movies: Jurassic Park, heading our way in February. The regular figures are awesome on their own, but wait until you see the exclusives!

From the Funko Blog:
Jurassic Park fans, get excited! To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the iconic film’s appearance on the silver screen, Jurassic Park is coming to Pop!

This series of Pop! features paleontologist Dr. Grant, Jurassic Park CEO John Hammond, mathematician Dr. Malcolm, and embryo-smuggler Dennis Nedry. (Keep an eye out for Dr. Ellie Sattler in Pop! Rides coming soon.)

We couldn’t forget the Jurassic Park dinosaurs! Featured in this line are the great T. rex, Velociraptor, and Dilophsaurus. Look for the Dilophosaurus chase, a rarity of 1-in-6.

Be on the lookout for exclusives. At Target you can find a wounded Dr. Malcolm, and the Dennis Nedry and Dilophosaurus 2-pack is available only at Entertainment Earth.

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