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Sitges 2017: Lineup Announced for Fest’s 50th Anniversary

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This year the Sitges Film Festival celebrates its 50th anniversary with a lineup looking to the new millennium. It will open with Guillermo del Toro’s The Shape of Water and close with Gothic horror The Lodgers, and there’s a ton of other exciting genre projects in between. Read on for the full details!

From the Press Release:
The Sitges Film Festival reaches its 50th year paying tribute to the classics, and it will be doing so accompanied by four important guests: Guillermo del Toro, Susan Sarandon, Dario Argento, and William Friedkin, who are all key for understanding the evolution that fantasy has experienced over the last few decades. To this end, its lineup is fueled by filmmakers, men and women, who are destined to become the fantastic genre leaders of the new millennium. In addition, the Festival will be entering headlong into the future of the universe of virtual reality screening, thanks to Samsung Sitges Cocoon, and of the new frontiers of distribution, where online platforms have a lot to say. This is the chronicle of Sitges 2017.

The Sitges Festival reaches its half-century mark, and it’s doing it staying true to its roots: remembering the fantastic film classics that have passed through its theaters since that first screening that took place in the Prado movie theater in 1968. To recall this milestone, this upcoming September 28th, the Prado will be welcoming the screening of Aelita (Yakov Protazanov, 1924), now a Soviet science fiction classic. But there will be more. Along with Guillermo del Toro, Dario Argento, and William Friedkin, Sitges will be rediscovering films like The Exorcist (1973), Suspiria (1977), and Crimson Peak (2015), key to understanding the evolution of fantastic genre from the late 20th century until reaching the new millennium. The Festival will also be paying tribute to actress Susan Sarandon, star of the cult movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975), and who would later become one of the great ladies of Hollywood.

Irish director Brian O’Malley will be closing Sitges’ 50th anniversary edition with The Lodgers, a Gothic horror story set in early 20th century rural Ireland, just recently presented at the Toronto Festival.

The framework behind the lineup that can be seen at the Festival, from October 5th to 15th, is made up of the work of young filmmakers from the United States, Latin America, Asia, and Europe who are destined to become the leaders of fantastic genre over the upcoming years. Brian Taylor, Hélène Cattet, Bruno Forzani, Emilio Portes, Cho Sun-ho, Andrés Goteira, among others, will be making their mark at a Festival that, far from conforming, searches for new talent capable of reinventing genre both in its language and its storylines.

Writer and director Brian Taylor directs Mom and Dad, his first solo film following the indispensable Crank. Mom and Dad’s hilarious storyline, a bizarre epidemic that causes lethally violent attacks of parents against their kids, stars Nicolas Cage and Selma Blair in a genre fan fest. Meanwhile, S. Craig Zahler–who dazzled us with his feature length debut, Bone Tomahawk–returns to Sitges with the brutal Brawl in Cell Block 99, where an ex-boxer turned drug dealer lands in a prison that will wind up becoming a genuine battlefield. Arriving from the United States we can also see Happy Death Day, an amusing horror comedy directed by Christopher Landon, which combines the storylines of Scream and Groundhog Day until it drives Jessica Rothe (La La Land) crazy, seeing a masked man kill her over and over again.

Time is also featured in the Korean film A Day, by newbie Cho Sun-ho, where a famous surgeon witnesses an accident during which he sees his daughter die. It’s a scene that will be repeated in an endless loop, with the father trying to change his daughter’s fate. Following 2016, when the big Asian authors cornered the Sitges Festival’s lineup, this year viewers will be able to confirm that there is life beyond great titles like The Handmaiden with films like, for example, the Taiwanese mon mon mon Monsters, by Giddens Ko, which combines high school bullying with supernatural horror in a film overflowing with talent and ingenuity. Other outstanding debuts in the Asian selection are a film by Jonathan Li (assistant director on the Infernal Affairs trilogy), who presents The Brink, a 100% made in Hong Kong thriller, starring Shawn Yue, that’s going to be a shocker; and the new film from Lee Sa-Rang who, with Real, achieves a cross between Nicolas Winding Refn and the best Korean thrillers.

The Canadian Les affamés, by Robin Aubert–known for the unsettling Saints-Martyrs-des-Damnés, reinvents the zombie genre with an intellectualized and now almost cult vision, after its screening at the Toronto and Austin festivals. Another one of this year’s big debuts, which consolidates the role of female filmmakers in genre film, is the one from French director Coralie Fargeat. Her debut feature Revenge exudes a violence with a nod to the 70s classics and contains a final climax that will be a dream for fantastic genre lovers. From Hungary comes Jupiter’s Moon, by Kornél Mundruczó–author of the extraordinary White God, a director who has always intelligently introduced the fantasy element in his films, making it a perfect visual mechanism. On the other hand, in The Ritual British David Bruckner plays with textures that go beyond Blair Witch or The Witch to achieve a horror movie that enjoyed an excellent reception in Toronto. More European talent this year in Sitges includes Thelma, by Norwegian Joachim Trier, who, from an auteur point of view, presents a supernatural thriller that examines human existence; the Russian blockbuster Salyut-7, a film that narrates the rescue of the Salyut 7 space station in 1985; and the spectacular Dutch western Brimstone, starring Dakota Fanning and Guy Pearce.

Latin America continues banking on the fantastic genre with the Brazilian film As boas maneiras, a story halfway between real and oneiric about the power of motherly love, directed by Marco Dutra and Juliana Rojas; El habitante, by Uruguayan Guillermo Amoedo, winner of the Award for Best Latin American Feature Film with The Stranger in 2014; and the terrifying Belzebuth, by Mexican Emilio Portes.

Once again, Catalan talent will be present at the Festival with several productions, including the latest work by Jaume Balagueró: Muse. Sitges will also be offering Sergio G. Sánchez’s debut feature with Marrowbone and programming films like Dhogs by Andrés Goteira, an independent production that tells the story of a chance meeting between a businessman and a mysterious woman, which leads us to a clandestine adventure, a desert, and a crime; and Black Hollow Cage, by Sadrac González-Perellón, a film that blends the horror genre with science fiction. Completing the Spanish scene are Errementari, the latest production by Álex de la Iglesia and Carolina Bang, directed by Paul Urkijo; Most Beautiful Island, directed by female filmmaker Ana Asensio, which will open the Noves Visions One section; and Arder, Compulsión, and The Biggest Thing That Ever Hit Broadway, three titles from the most contemporary Spanish independent cinema.

The documentary, always present in the Festival’s lineup, will be represented by films like 78/52, by Alexandre O. Philippe–who has presented several documentaries at previous Festival editions, which will be in the Official In-competition Selection. The piece closely analyzes the shower scene in Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho. Along with it, we can also see Caniba, following its screening at the Venice Mostra, a film directed by Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Verena Paravel, which reflects the disconcerting importance of cannibalistic desire in human existence.

Samsung Sitges Cocoon, Series, Animation…

Also this year, on its 50th anniversary, the Sitges Festival is taking a step forward and reinforcing the presence of virtual reality through Samsung Sitges Cocoon, which is expanding its lineup with two new venues and now includes an Official In-competition Selection that will be evaluated by an official jury, presided over by Jaume Balagueró and Javier Olivares. French director Alexandre Aja (High Tension) will be presenting Campfire Creepers, the first virtual reality horror series with 360º vision; and Guy Shelmerdine, director of Catatonic, a stunning piece that could be seen in last year’s Samsung Sitges Cocoon, returns with Night, Night, a terrifying experience about children’s fears.

Genre series productions will also be playing an important role this year with screenings at the Auditori itself. Movistar+ premieres “La Zona”; and we can also see the presentation of the second season of “Stranger Things” attended by Millie Bobby Brown and Noah Schnapp, two of its stars, and the screening of the Korean Okja and What Happened to Monday?, made by a director who’s very well-known at the Festival, Norwegian Tommy Wirkola.

Since 1995, Sitges has dedicated a space to animation. This year it will be paying tribute to the hundred years of Japanese animation, and it will be doing it with the programming of five animated films from Japan in the Anima’t section, including the multi award-winning Lu Over the Wall, or A Silent Voice, which has enjoyed a spectacular run on Asian screens. Without forgetting European animation, gems like the French Loving Vincent will also be present.

The Festival takes place on the Catalan coast approximately 35 kilometers south of Barcelona, Spain. This upcoming Monday, September 18th (at 13:00), will be the start of the presale of tickets for ticket pack holders, and on Tuesday the 19th (at 13:00), general tickets will go on sale.

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Alien: Covenant’s Carmen Ejogo Joins True Detective Season 3

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“From the dusty mesa her looming shadow grows…”

The first season of HBO’s “True Detective” was one of the best seasons ever put on a TV screen. Hands down. The second season was another story altogether. While not a complete waste of time (Colin Farrell owed) the season was basically merely ‘meh’.

But what about “True Detective” season 3?

Well, a few months back it was announced that the third season had been greenlit by HBO, with creator Nic Pizzolatto returning to pen the series and director Jeremy Saulnier (Green Room) taking the helm of the episodes.

Today we have news that Carmen Ejogo – who you may recognize Ejogo from such recent fright flicks as It Comes at Night, Alien: Covenant, and The Purge: Anarchy – will be joining the previously announced Mahershala Ali (Moonlight) for Season 3.

Ejogo will play the female lead, Amelia Reardon, who THR describes as “an Arkansas schoolteacher with a connection to two missing children in 1980.”

Nice Pizzolatto will serve as showrunner and direct alongside Jeremy Saulnier. Executive producers include Pizzolatto, Saulnier, Scott Stephens and season one stars Woody Harrelson and Matthew McConaughey as well as original director Cary Joji Fukunaga. Steve Golin, Bard Dorros and Richard Brown are also credited as exec producers.

Synopsis:

A macabre crime in the heart of the Ozarks and a mystery that deepens over decades and plays out in three separate time periods.

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Danielle Harris Tried to Get Jamie Lloyd into New Halloween Movie

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One of the top films all of us are looking forward to the most here at Dread Central is Blumhouse’s upcoming sequel/reboot thing to John Carpenter’s Halloween.

The new Halloween (2018) film is written by Danny McBride and David Gordon Green and is all set to be directed by Green this year. Recently we learned that original Halloween star Jamie Lee Curtis was going to be returning to the new film.

Not only that, but Curtis’ classic character Laurie Strode would have a daughter… played by Judy Greer. But what about Danielle Harris?

After all, Harris was the star of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Curse of Michael Myers. Let alone, she had a starring role in both Rob Zombie’s remake and it’s sequel. So how about the new film?

Turns out Harris tried to get her character Jamie Llyod (aka the daughter of Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode) from Halloween 4 and 5 into the new film… but she was turned down by Blumhouse and the new creative team. That sucks.

Harris was pretty bummed about the whole deal and took to Facebook recently to clear the air. You can check out quotes from her video, along with the video itself, below.

After that make sure to hit us up and let us know how much you would have liked to see Harris return to Halloween in the comments below or on social media!

“What I am bummed about is… [Laurie] has a daughter,” Harris says. “I was okay with it when she had a son… but they’re saying it’s the last one and… she has a daughter. And it’s not Jamie. It’s just kind of a bummer, I guess. I think somebody had said, it wouldn’t have hurt the movie to have Jamie reunited with [Laurie]. But that didn’t happen.”

“We did put in a call, thought it’d be kinda cool even just to have a little flashback…” She continues. “They were not interested. So. I tried.”

Blumhouse’s Halloween hits theaters October 19, 2018.

halloween and germany

Posted by Danielle Harris on Monday, November 6, 2017

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Jordan Peele Is Open to the Idea of Get Out Sequel

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Recently we shared the baffling news that this year, the Golden Globes were considering writer-director Jordan Peele’s psychological horror-thriller Get Out a comedy.

Hurm. While that bit of news still doesn’t make a bit of sense to me, today we have an update on Jordan Peele’s possible sequel Get Out 2. Which is always welcome.

Deadline was recently speaking with the filmmaker and Peele told them that although he still hasn’t cracked the sequel, if he comes up with a fresh spin he would have no problem revisiting the first film.

“I haven’t decided anything yet,” Peele told the site. “I am allowing the creative part to bubble up, and not force it. I know if a follow-up is meant to happen, it will. I’m open to figuring out what it is. But I also don’t want to let down the original and its fans. I simply would not do something like that for the cash.”

Good to hear!

I don’t know about you, but if Jordan Peele does decide to revisit the world of Get Out again in the future, I will be there. After reading these comments, I have faith the man will not return unless the story deserves it. Money be damned!

Unless… the sequel is called Sell Out… Ooohh. Snap. All jokes aside, in this world of sequels and remakes, it feels pretty damn good to hear a filmmaker talk this way.

What do you think of a Get Out sequel? Do you think the first film needs a continuation? Make sure to hit us up and let us know in the comments below or on social media!

You can buy Get Out on Blu-ray HERE.

Synopsis:

Now that Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and his girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams), have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend getaway upstate with Missy and Dean. At first, Chris reads the family’s overly accommodating behavior as nervous attempts to deal with their daughter’s interracial relationship, but as the weekend progresses, a series of increasingly disturbing discoveries lead him to a truth that he never could have imagined.

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