Exclusive: Sledgehammer Films to Produce Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher - Dread Central
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Exclusive: Sledgehammer Films to Produce Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher

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Those moonshine-making Appalachians have been getting a bad cinematic rap ever since John Boorman’s seminal 1972 flick Deliverance, and filmmaker Joaquin Montalvan is poised to add yet another entry in the sub-genre with his forthcoming feature Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher.

To be produced by Montalvan’s Sledgehammer Films and shot in and around Los Angeles and Pasadena, California, this spring over the course of thirty days, Montalvan describes Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher as a “retro grindhouse film,” which is set to star Stephen Feinberg as ‘The Storyteller,’ Chris Shumway as ‘Billy Wayne,’ Theresa Holly as ‘Rae Lynn’ and Paul E. Respass in the lead as one ‘Carl Henry Jessup,’ the titular Hillbilly Butcher. Of the script (according to the official synopsis), it takes place “in a lonely backwoods shack, where Carl Henry Jessup spends his time drinkin’ and thinkin’ bout dem good ole days. With only his half-sister Rae Lynn and his friend Billy Wayne to keep him company, he lives an isolated existence – that is, until folks start trespassin’ on his property, and Carl gets off his ass and becomes the Hillbilly Butcher.”

Co-writer and co-producer (with Eunice Font) Montalvan will also direct.

Chatting last week with the filmmaker, he stated of Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher, “The film is entirely self-financed so I can have total control and so there is no gun to my head with regard to time, though I anticipate having a completely finished film by June, so that I can start submitting it to festivals. And though I am going for a retro grindhouse 16mm look, the film will be shot digitally in HD.”

As for what inspired the project, Montalvan revealed, “I had just done a short film called Straight Razor (you can see that below), and I wanted to do another short similar where the title of the film is the name of a murder weapon. The next short was going to be called Butcher Knife. Around that time my actor friend Paul (Respass) showed up, and he had just had surgery and had been off work for a month so he had let his hair and beard grow, and he looked like a hillbilly. The idea for the short went out the window then and the idea to do a feature about a hillbilly who also happens to be a butcher was staring me right in the face. So I asked Paul if he was willing to stay looking that way for several months, and since he was cool with that, we were off to the races.”

straight razor from Joaquin Montalvan on Vimeo.

Regarding the gore audiences can expect (which will be provided in-house by Pasadena’s Sledgehammer Films), the filmmaker stated, “There will be blood! For me, blood is never gratuitous. It is part of the atmosphere of the film. It’s like when you’re cooking a barbeque, you gotta’ add some sauce to the meat. The blood is the sauce for the film. If you wanna know the truth, in my humble opinion, a film without blood is like a marriage without sex.”

We’ll keep you updated on Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher. In the interim check out the project’s official poster below, and then visit the Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher Facebook page.

Exclusive: Sledgehammer Films to Produce Legend of the Hillbilly Butcher

We also have some stills, a poster, and the trailer from Montalvan’s previous arthouse serial killer feature Hole, which premiered last year at the DGA and can be found on Facebook here.

Joaquin Montalvan's Hole

Joaquin Montalvan's Hole

Joaquin Montalvan's Hole

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Inside Remake Gets New Poster and U.S. Release Date

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It’s about time.

It has been a whopping four months since we shared with you guys the red band trailer for the upcoming English language remake of Inside starring Rachel Nichols and Laura Harring.

Today we have an all-new poster for the film (via our buddies at Arrow in the Head), and the one-sheet also boasts the remake’s U.S. release date. Yes, Inside will be hitting Stateside on January 12, 2018.

You can click on the poster to the right to check it out in higher-res. After that make sure to hit us up and let us know if you’re planning to check out this remake in the comments below!

Miguel Ángel Vivas directed the Inside remake.

Produced by Adrian Guerra and Nuria Valls at Spain’s Nostromo Pictures, the remake was written by Manu Diez and [REC] creator/co-director Jaume Balaguero. “We took the original idea and made it an edge-of-your-seat thriller, more Hitchcock-ian than a splatter-fest,” said Guerra.

Again, Inside hits U.S. theaters and VOD January 12, 2018.

Synopsis:
Pregnant and depressed, a young widow tries to rebuild her life following the fateful car accident where she lost her husband and partially lost her hearing. Now, about to go into labor, she’s living in a remote house in the suburbs when, one Christmas night, she receives an unexpected visit from another woman with a devastating objective: to rip the child she’s carrying from inside her. But a mother’s fury when it comes to protecting her child should never be underestimated.

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Deep Blue Sea 2 Rated R for Creature Violence/Gore and Language

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Five months ago we shared the news that there was a secret sequel to the 1999 killer sharks vs. Tom Jane and LL Cool J movie Deep Blue Sea filming, and today we have the sequel’s rating.

And it’s about what you’d expect. Not that that’s a bad thing.

Yes, the upcoming shark attack sequel Deep Blue Sea 2 has been rated R by the MPAA for “creature violence and gore and for language.”

Not only that, but we have a few words on what we can expect from the sequel via a creative executive over at Warner Bros. named Matt Bierman.

“We are a true sequel,” Bierman said regarding the sequel. “We wanted to keep to the spirit of Deep Blue Sea and why people love it. The research that was used on the sharks in Deep Blue Sea 2 comes from the mythology and storyline of the first movie. We have given the lead shark a personality and hope the fans will embrace that as it really helps the storytelling and the narrative in a way that [the] first one didn’t. Deep Blue Sea 2 has a slightly slower build, but once the rubber band snaps, things go boom really quickly!”

The lead shark has a personality? How could that be a bad thing?

Let’s just hope there aren’t scenes of the rugged Tom Jane stand-in lovingly hugging/stroking the shark after it does something cool and telling the new guy how the shark (nicknamed Bruce) is just “misunderstood.”

…And then the shark saves everyone at the end. Called it.

The sequel is directed by Darin Scott from a screenplay by Erik Patterson, Hans Rodionoff, and Jessica Scott and stars Danielle Savre, Rob Mayes, and Michael Beach.

The movie is set to premiere on Syfy sometime next year. Once we know the exact date we’ll let us know so stay tuned!

“Deepest. Bluest. My head is like a shark’s fin…”

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Friends Don’t Let Friends Review – A Haunting Mixture of Psychological Turmoil and Brutal Supernatural Horror

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Starring Brittany Anne Woodford, Jenny Curtis, Kanin Guntzelman, Brendan McGowan, Jake White

Directed by James S. Brown

We all like to think of ourselves as being surrounded by friends, but let’s face it, if we were to ever truly hit hard times, there are probably very few, if any, people we could truly rely on. So on some level, Friends Don’t Let Friends is a film we can all relate too, as it deals with this very issue.

Stephanie is an emotionally unstable young woman who strangles her boyfriend to death after he insults and breaks up with her. She calls her friends to help her dispose the body out in the Joshua Tree National Part area, and instead of reporting her to the police, they reluctantly comply. As their car breaks down, the four friends find themselves alone at night in the Californian wilderness with the rotting corpse in need of disposal. Given their dire circumstances, they begin to become more and more aggressive towards each other, and this was where the film was really at its best. I was on the edge of my seat, wondering how far the limits of their friendship could be stretched, and who would be the first to crack and turn on the others.

Anyway, their body disposal endeavor soon proves to be a mistake, as Stephanie’s ex rises from the grave as vengeful zombie demon thing with claws as long as knives. I’ll admit, I first I thought Friends Don’t Let Friends was going to be a movie purely about the limits of trust, so I was pretty surprised when the supernatural elements came into play. And when they did, the trust and friendship elements of the plot were somewhat downplayed in favor of a more traditional horror approach, and while it was still entertaining, I still would have preferred for the film not to have strayed from its initial path. At least the ending came as a shocker. I won’t go into spoilers, but let’s just say the even the most attentive viewers probably won’t see it coming.

As you can probably guess from a psychologically-driven film of this kind, the performances were top notch, with Brittany Anne Woodford being on particularly top form as the manipulative and unstable Stephanie, a character who revels in the revels in the power she felt when ending another human life.

With its mixture of psychological turmoil and brutal supernatural horror, Friends Don’t Let Friends is a film I would certainly recommend, but keep in mind that it may make you think twice when confiding in people who you think of as being your friends.

8 out of 10.

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