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Kruger, Ehren (The Ring 2)



Back when the final Scream sequel was getting ready to roll, it was announced that Kevin Williamson had left the project after writing the scripts for the first two films and a relative newcomer by the name of Ehren Kruger would be handling the duties of bringing the Ghostface Killer’s murderous rampages to an end.

We’re horror fans, so of course we were wary about the new blood even though his credits included the underrated Arlington Road, which was certainly not what you’d call a horror pedigree. Well, Scream 3 came and went, but Kruger stayed his ground and was soon working on what could’ve been any Asian horror fans worst nightmare: an American remake of Ringu.

The Ring, however, did not come and go and showed us that Ehren Kruger was a writer with a few tricks up his literate sleeve. Soon after that it didn’t seem like a project was announced that he wasn’t attached to, and when Terry Gilliam announced Kruger’s script for The Brothers Grimm would be his next movie, we knew this was more than a one-trick pony.

Through the course of the last few months, Mr. Kruger and I have conducted a lengthy interview about his work so far and that which is to come, and I would like to pre-empt this interview with a hearty thank you to him for sticking with it. I had a lot more questions than I originally thought, but he handled each like a pro. I hope you will find the results pleasing…

Johnny Butane: So how did you get into the world of screenwriting to begin with?

Ehren Krueger: I started trying to write screenplays when I was in high school. Emphasis on “trying.” I had always loved movies and found the screenplay form fascinating. In some respects, it has a lot more in common with architectural blueprints or programming code that it does with prose fiction. It doesn’t exist for its own sake; it exists for another, quite different, end result. When I attended college at NYU, I continued writing there. In all, I probably wrote 10 scripts before I ever attempted to get an agent with one. I read as many professional-caliber scripts as I could, and I waited until I felt my own work was at that level. Had I ever tried to get my career going based upon the earliest scripts I wrote, those doors would have closed in my face real quick.

JB: So what was the first script you felt confident enough to show to an agent, and what was the first one you sold? What was the time frame between those two?

EK: The script that got me agency representation was a creature movie, actually, and it was called Mythic. However, when we sent the project to studios, nobody bit. So I kept my day job. About six months later, I was one of the winners of a screenwriting competition called the Nicholl Fellowships – but for another script, Arlington Road. I owe most of my subsequent good fortune to that screenplay. Although no studio initially wanted to buy it, an independent producer who worked diligently to find it a director and a home optioned it. The movie, as you know, was eventually made. But it took about a year from the point I signed with an agent to my first actual paid writing “job”. That seemed like forever to me, but I think most writers would tell you that time frame was quick.

JB: Ah, yes, Arlington Road, that was a really cool movie. I bet you were pretty psyched when you heard who was taking the leads…

EK: Yes, we had a good cast on that one. Interestingly, Tim Robbins was initially going to play the hero, but by the time his deal closed, he changed his mind and signed on for the villain’s role. That was one where the movie’s financiers were very, very nervous about whether the audience would accept the ending. It made the entire experience a bit anxious…but fortunately the finished film plays as we intended.

JB: So how did lead you to your involvment with Scream 3?

EK: Well, from there I ended up selling a script called Riendeer Games to Dimension Films, as part of a multi-picture deal where I would owe them work on several projects. That script was written as a strange hybrid of Reservoir Dogs and It’s a Wonderful Life, and the subsequent movie (perhaps understandably) didn’t quite come off. But it gave me the chance to work with the legendary director John Frankenheimer, for which I wouldn’t trade anything.

Anyway, while I was in Canada on the set of that movie, Dimension called me and explained they were in a bit of a bind. They were scheduled to start shooting Scream 3 in two months, and they didn’t have a script. As in zero script. Apparently, Kevin Williamson had been overworking himself on other endeavors and Scream 3 was the project that lost out. Now while studios do this kind of thing all the time – setting a production start based upon actor and director availabilities, before a script’s been finished – this situation was unusual because no script had even been started. So the cast and crew had all been hired with essentially no idea of what movie they’d be making.

So I wrote a treatment in two days, faxed it to Wes Craven and he basically approved it. I wrote a first draft in two weeks and worked with Wes up until production on revising it. There were some unusual parameters I’d been given from the outset. For instance, the movie’s star (Neve Campbell) was only available for a third of the shoot, so I had to write around that, and in the aftermath of the Columbine tragedy, the studio was skittish about the blood-and-gore factor, so I had to write around that and emphasize more comedy. Some people like the movie; others don’t – but the making of it was a real obstacle course and it’s a minor miracle it turned out as well as it did.

Oh and naturally, one of the reasons that I took the job was that I had certainly heard my share of Freddy Krueger jokes in my youth – what with my last name, of course. So I felt that if I could in any way make Wes Craven’s life difficult for a few months, the payback would be worth it.

JB: Ah, sweet revenge…

So how did you feel about the final result of Scream 3 in relation to the rest of the series? Did Craven stick pretty close to your script?

EK: I think that in general, no matter how successful the sequel, it can never recapture the freshness and surprises of the original that spawned it. So in making a sequel, the odds are always against you. I think the third Scream, while imperfect, was a satisfying conclusion to the series. Of course, the first two were imperfect too, but the first one was ahead of the curve. Whether or not you liked the first one, it felt new and different, and no sequel could ever quite recapture that. But when a story is as self-reflexive as the first one was, really the only way to advance it was to keep spiraling inward. So yes, the final product was very much the script. Everything is cyclical in the pop culture business, and thus two decades from now, that series’ tone and style will no doubtlessly be back in vogue – for a three-year window or so.

JB: So after that, the next horror project you were on was the one most of us horror fans feared the most; The Ring remake. The first thing I’d like to know is how familiar were you with the Japanese original?

EK: I had seen Hideo Nakata’s Ringu prior to being offered the remake job. I saw it the best way there is to see it – on a beat-up videotape from a cult-movie video store, viewed alone late at night. It was one of those rare genre films whose images stuck with me the next day.

JB: That is the best way to see it, definitely. So when you were offered the job, were you concerned about living up to the first film, or more concerned with making something unique?

EK: It’s much easier to write a remake of a film you feel is flawed. However, none of us involved with The Ring felt that that was the case with Ringu, so we took great pains to be as respectful as possible to the source material. I completely sympathize with anyone who was opposed to remaking it in the first place – I’ve felt the same way about remakes of movies I’ve really liked. But the original will always exist, and anyone who is a serious film fan should always seek out an original version before viewing its remake. It’s like rock songs and cover versions, same deal.

With that said, on a purely creative level, I thought it would be an interesting exercise to see how Ringu’s themes, pace and style – which are very Japanese in character – “translated” into a Western setting. Which of its ideas were universal to the genre and which were more culture-specific? This sort of thing made it a fun process for me, and of course, Gore Verbinski’s vision for the movie was inspired. Hideo Nakata has always been very respectful of our version (he especially likes the horse stuff), but you better believe he thinks he made the better one!

JB: I have to say that I, personally, was surprised as hell by how good it was. It really did take the themes of the original and add just enough to make it effective on a Western audience, as was evident by its box office take. It’s taken the place of films like The Sixth Sense, a mainstream horror film that a lot of people have seen and were scared shitless because of. And, in the interest of full disclosure, we were non to kind to the idea of the remake on the site previous to it’s release.

EK: Well, “mainstream” horror is always a challenge. Having movie stars and too much production value very often works against you in this genre. But occasionally you’re able to find a workable fit.

JB: Did you meet Nakata previous to writing the remake?

EK: No, I didn’t meet him at any point while working on the first movie. Only via the sequel.

JB: So since you brought it up, what can you tell us about the sequel?

EK: The Ring 2 primarily takes place in Astoria, Oregon, where Rachel (Naomi Watts) and her son Aidan (David Dorfman) have moved to seek out a quiet small-town existence and to put the events of the first film behind them. Naturally, things don’t go as planned. Bad things come their way. Very bad. Is that vague enough for you?

JB: I guess if that’s all you can say, that’s all you can say.

EK: One thing I can tell you is that the storyline doesn’t follow the first Japanese sequel, Ringu 2, at all. So in that sense, Hideo is not doing something he’s done before.

JB: So have you been on set at all since the filming started?

EK: Yes, I’ve spent a number of days on set. The work looks great so far.

JB: How do you think Hideo is dealing with his first big U.S. film?

EK: Hideo is enjoying himself and, to the best of my knowledge, enjoying the challenges that are specific to making major studio movies. He made Ringu for about a million dollars and this one costs many, many times that. However, simply having more toys in his proverbial toy box doesn’t make his job any easier. If anything, it’s the opposite. But I think he appreciates working ten to twelve hours a day as opposed to the endless, marathon days that he often shot with his Japanese films. (They don’t have the same strong unions that we do.) As for Hideo’s English, he’s almost totally fluent.

JB: Well, since we can’t go much further into Ring 2, what can you tell us about Skeleton Key?

EK: The Skeleton Key is a mysterious Southern Gothic creep-out. It’s hard to describe in a short summary, but it belongs to the category of horror movies like Don’t Look Now or Rosemary’s Baby where ideas, suspense and dread are the driving factors. It’s set in and around modern-day New Orleans. Kate Hudson plays a live-in nurse hired by an elderly woman (Gena Rowlands) to care for her dying husband (John Hurt) in a foreboding plantation mansion in the Louisiana bayous. Intrigued by the couple’s secretive ways and their rambling house, Kate explores the mansion and discovers that the skeleton key she’s been given opens all the doors in the house except one. Her efforts to discover what lies behind it spiral her into the middle of a terrifying mystery.

In many respects, the story has the form and trappings of a ghost story, but it plays out (we hope) like no ghost story you’ve ever seen. Peter Sarsgaard and Joy Bryant have the other significant roles and Iain Softley is directing. We’ve got about another month of principal photography to go.

JB: Where did the idea for Skeleton Key come from initially? How long had the script existed before it was picked up?

EK: The idea for the script came from an interest in writing a ghost story that was, in some respect, specifically American. Most examples of the genre aren’t rooted in a real cultural identity and so they often feel bland, generic and inauthentic. New Orleans as a city is so representative of America’s “melting pot” of races, classes and cultures – and buried secrets – that it was really a case of the setting inspiring the tale.

I wrote the script two years ago and Universal picked it up. We were set to shoot last year, but it wouldn’t quite have been appropriate for Kate’s character to be pregnant, so we postponed production until this spring.

JB: Did he desire for writing a ghost story that was specifically American have anything to do with your experiences on The Ring remake? Granted that wasn’t strictly a ghost story, but it does have elements.

EK: Yes, I’m sure it did. Working on Japanese source material and analyzing what aspects of its mythology were specific to Japanese culture was a process that got me thinking about what mythology and lore was specific to American culture. And yes, The Ring is absolutely a traditional ghost story, as it’s all about a restless spirit seeking retribution. By that standard, The Skeleton Key is very non-traditional.

JB: If I may, I’d like to ask you about The Brothers Grimm, as well. You had this script for a while before it was picked up, didn’t you?

EK: I wrote The Brothers Grimm as an original screenplay in 2001, which is when MGM bought it – only to nearly abandon it later. We developed a.k.a. rewrote it for a year and a half before Terry Gilliam got involved. He really changed the tone of the material and made it his own. He has a very distinctive, playful and macabre vision of the way he sees the world. He’s a wonderful creative force that inspires everyone around him. It was one of those projects that looked like it was all going to fall apart right before production started (and Terry certainly knows about those), but luckily the stars aligned and the movie got made.

JB: How did Terry hear about it originally? It’s really such a great match for the material from what I’ve heard about it.

EK: One of the film’s producers, Charles Roven, had worked with Terry on 12 Monkeys and an unmade project called Good Omens, and brought the script to him. Terry read it at a time when some of his other more personal projects were having trouble getting off the ground, which made him willing to consider doing a “studio movie.” Ordinarily, he is not the biggest fan of the Hollywood corporate juggernaut/process/machine. Of course, no Terry Gilliam film can ever be described as a typical “studio movie” and Grimm is no exception. His imagination runs wild once more.

JB: So tell us a bit about it, where did the idea come from?

EK: The idea came from reading about the actual Brothers Grimm, who were essentially librarians when they embarked upon a project to “collect” European folk tales (mainly tales for children, passed down orally from generation to generation) and create a book of written versions. To their surprise, they became the J.K. Rowlings of their day. Most people think that the Grimms “invented” famous fairy tales like Snow White, Cinderella and Little Red Riding Hood, however that wasn’t the case Those stories were the people’s tales, widely known, and the Grimms were simply the first to transcribe and publish them. In the 1800’s, this made them scholars. In our day and age, with copyright laws and intellectual property cases and so forth, it might make them thieves. So this notion became the seed of the movie – what if the great Brothers Grimm had been charlatans and con men? (Although, somehow I doubt they were.) It seemed to be a good point of departure for an adventure story.

JB: Sounds like a very cool idea. A bit about the casting; Obviously Monica Belluci is perfect for pretty much any role that requires a beautfiul woman, but were you happy with the castingof the leads?

EK: Both Matt Damon and Heath Ledger are going to surprise a lot of people with their performances. When you think of nineteenth-century Germanic authors, Matt & Heath probably don’t pop into your head, but they make it work. They really vanish into their roles and have terrific fun with them. Besides, the real Brothers Grimm were not quite as handsome. I’m not sure they could have carried the picture.

JB: I can’t wait to see what Gilliam does with it, it’s a very original idea that fits his style perfectly. Have you been on set at all for the shooting?

EK: It was shot in Prague and yes, I was there for a short while. The movie looks very lush and inventively designed, just as you’d hope.

JB: Very cool!

Onto a film I’m very excited about, Blood and Chocolate. I know it was based on a novel, what’ve you done differently with the script from the novel?

EK: OK…Blood & Chocolate. That one is just getting up and running. We’ve just hired a director and we’re hoping to start shooting at the end of the year. Our version deviates a bit from the source novel at first glance, but is considerably faithful in tone and spirit and mythology.

The novel examines a hidden society of werewolves, a bit like Anne Rice explored all those vampires around us, and focuses on Vivian, a young female werewolf who falls in love with a human man and finds her loyalties divided. The novel took place in America, with most of its characters high schoolers. We’ve made the protagonists a few years more adult and have moved the setting across the Atlantic, to better capture the rich history of a culture that’s lived among us for centuries. But hopefully the novel’s fans will allow us these liberties when they see the end result. Most werewolf movies take a campy approach and end up being not very frightening; this one should be quite different, assuming we all do our jobs right. It has fierce suspense, a gripping romance and lots of genuine scares. I am always reluctant to talk about any project before shooting has begun, but as of this particular moment, the odds look pretty good.

JB: Sounds very interesting. Is the title going to stay the same, considering the changes done do it? Anyone in mind for the design of the werewolves?

EK: Yes, same title. Rupert Wainwright will now be directing, which is very good news for the movie. He has a keen understanding of the genre and its lore and mythology and he’s very conscious of the need to portray this society in ways that we haven’t seen before. You should be able to count on strong performances and an exciting visual palette for the film, which is now tentatively slated to start production early in the new year.

JB: Can’t wait to see how it turns out!

So what can you tell us about your work on The Talisman script?

EK: I wrote a few drafts of The Talisman (an adaptation of the Stephen King/Peter Straub novel) last year. A couple writers worked on the project before me, and a couple writers have worked on it since. However, the producers and studio were pleased enough with my version to expose it to filmmakers. Two directors signed on and later signed off, after being unable to agree with the studio and producers on what the precise tone and style of the movie should be. This is usually called “creative differences,” which is not a euphemism but a very real and worthwhile reason to part ways on a project.

The reason the project has spent such a long time in development is that it is no easy task to condense an 800-page odyssey of a horror-fantasy novel into a single two-hour movie. To adapt the book faithfully would require an 8 or 10 hour miniseries. And yet there is a wonderful, simple story at the novel’s core that a feature film could certainly do justice to. Hopefully the right director will come along and make the project a reality. As for now, I’ve moved onto other things and am not actively involved with the script.

JB: Since you’re not actively involved as of now, can you give us an idea of what was different in your version, or what you had focused on the most in your draft?

EK: In my drafts, a lot was changed from the book. The focus was on the book’s strength (in my opinion) – Jack’s cross-country quest to save his mother’s life and his unlikely alliance and friendship with Wolf. The time frame was condensed to a few days to get from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and so a number of Jack’s stops along the way and many secondary characters were excised entirely. The novel is a horror/fantasy hybrid and my drafts emphasized the latter. My mandate was to write a two-hour PG-13 movie, so most of my story choices were made with that in mind. If my mandate had been to write an R-rated cable miniseries, my drafts would have been notably different.

JB: I had heard a lot of the quest stuff was removed from your draft, like you said some of the stops made and so forth. What about The Territories? Was there any action taking place there or was it more focused on our side of things?

EK: Sounds like you are pretty familiar with the book. In my drafts, the Territories were visited on several occasions, but not as often as in the novel. It covers much more ground than we possibly could. Some of this was for budgetary reasons, and some was due to the fact that the novel’s “parallel world,” of course, affects the real one. Since the movie’s focus was to be on Jack and Wolf, many of the most valuable parts of the book for our purposes involved those where Wolf was a stranger in Jack’s world. And of course, I can only speak to the drafts I was involved in; subsequent writers may have changed my choices of what to keep or discard quite thoroughly.

JB: I really hope that if and when it does get off the ground they’re able to treat it with the respect it deserves. From the sounds of it you had the right idea for condensing it to its barest essentials, which would be necessary to make such a long book into a two-hour film…

Are there any other projects you’re working on now that you can tell us about?

EK: There are a couple other projects, which should hit the news this fall, but it’s a little early for me to discuss them. Thanks for asking though.

JB: No problem, thanks for taking out so much time to talk to us!

And boy, do I mean that. Mr. Kruger and I traded e-mails for many months to get the sum total of what you just read, which is more than you’d expect from someone so deeply involved in Hollywood.

The Brothers Grimm is set for release on November 23rd, 2005, Skeleton Key will creep out audiences sometime next spring, and the release for The Ring 2 was recently moved to March 24th, 2005. So next year could be the Year of the Kruger! Stick around Dread Central for the latest on all these projects!

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Spoilers: Which Major Walking Dead Actor Might Leave the Series After This Season?




Like many of you out there, I gave up on AMC’s The Walking Dead a long time ago. In fact, I gave up after they fired Frank Darabont following the horrendous second season.

That said, I’m not bitter towards the series, and hell, even I watched the season premiere where Negan beat the brains off Big Red and the dude from Mayhem.

Also, I’m aware there has been some controversy surrounding the “death” (yeah, right) of Chandler Rigg’s character. I have no opinion on the matter.

Speaking of character deaths, we might want to expect another this season as it looks like Lauren Cohan, aka Maggie, has taken another job on the ABC pilot “Whiskey Cavalier.”

While this doesn’t immediately mean Cohan’s Maggie character will kick the big old zombie-bucket… it pretty much means that.

Variety reports that Cohan has been in negotiations with AMC for months over her return, but she does not currently have a contract for the ninth season and will instead take the lead in the new ABC pilot.

Do you think this means Maggie is done for? Let us know below!

“The Walking Dead” returns on Sunday, February 25th.

Season 8B Synopsis:
All-out war has had a devastating impact on every person involved. The communities themselves are fractured. Alexandria has been destroyed, the people at Hilltop finds themselves pinned, and the Kingdom is shattered — half of them dead, the other half controlled by the Saviors.

At the very center — Rick, having been distracted by the conflict, has just returned home to learn that Carl, who heroically shepherded the Alexandrians to safety during Negan’s attack, has been bitten by a walker. Once his sole motivation in this otherwise stark existence, Rick is forced to deal with this reality. Carl has always been a beacon of hope, a symbol for the remaining thread of humanity — lessons that the survivors around him would be wise to take with them as this war surges onward.

But Rick isn’t the only person who’s living in peril. Aaron and Enid are in a dire situation at Oceanside — unclear if they’re in friendly territory, or if they’ve just made new enemies. Father Gabriel will do his part in attempting to smuggle Dr. Carson safely back to the Hilltop, and a pregnant Maggie is wrestling with the many moral gray areas that come with leadership during war. In a standoff with the Saviors, she must decide how to proceed with the dozens of POW lives she’s currently in control of, as well as new complications that come with being a leader.

In addition to the war, Negan continues to deal with struggles within his ranks as workers, traitors, and others’ thirst for power cause conflict at the Sanctuary. Having gifted the Saviors a major victory, Eugene’s loyalty is repeatedly tested as new obstacles present themselves.

As all-out war consumes us, the line between good and evil continues to blur. People fighting for what they believe in. Everybody working together for something bigger — to feel safe and have a world worth living in.


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Filthy and Fine! The Best Shots of Ash vs. Evil Dead



The Evil Dead franchise is my all time favorite horror series, which evolves its mythos with each entry. Of course, the original Evil Dead has been just a straight-up horror film, but thanks to the fateful meeting of filmmaker Scott Spiegel, director Sam Raimi took the franchise into a strange comedic territory, using slapstick while still keeping the tones of sheer terror. What makes this terror stay with the franchise even with Ash’s loudmouth persona is it’s influential and inspiring camera work that Sam Raimi makes a legend behind the camera.

After years of waiting for the master of horror to return to the Evil Dead franchise, our palates were satiated with “Ash Vs Evil Dead” which continued the inspiring cinematography. With two seasons of a television show under Raimi’s watchful eye and a third season on the way, I took a look at every episode in the series to see if each director on board the project kept that eye for cinematography and shooting style. The series was notorious for it’s over the top gore and gags and I could’ve sat here and just gushed over the geysers of blood emitting from every orifice in the show, but, what I found in each episode brought more and more to the table. There are still horrifying shots to balance out the comedy of the show, but there are also amazing character moments within that foreshadow and evolve each character.

Think about it, other than Ash we’ve never had a cast of characters that survived more than two minutes but now there’s a crew of Ghostbeaters! Don’t worry as we still have randoms coming in and out that leave you to ponder, “How long can this poor Shemp live?” as they burst into blood and viscera. There are shots that revel in the grotesque, but there are also shots that revel in who our heroes are and delve into their psyches, the specialty of the Deadites! For those who’d like to follow along with the shots in the show, I’ve given you the time these shots show up if you’re watching the show on Netflix skipping the recaps.

To see the images in their full-size glory, give them a groovy little click!

S1E1: “El Jefe”
Directed By Sam Raimi
The flashlight twirling on the ground illuminating the scene as it spins on the two detectives faces gives way to one of the best sequences in the series. As Amanda’s deadite partner attacks her, the light spins furiously with the actions of the scene as she tries to retrieve her gun. When she retrieves the gun and aims it at the deadite the audience member would get a sigh of relief that she would triumph but is then tricked into terror. The flashlight spinning becomes slower and slower on both their faces as the man cries in pain pleading to his partner. The light illuminates his transformation back into a deadite horrifyingly for a slow dread filled shot. This shot and sequence show Sam still has it and sets up the series for what’s to come.

S1E2: “Bait”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
As Ash brings down the cross upon the ground the camera pans to Pablo and Kelly with a bright sunrise upon them. While the horrors of the night are over it is this sunrise the signifies the dawning of Kelley’s new life and her dialogue over this shot swears her vengeance.

S1E3: “Books From Beyond”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
Up until this point, Ruby has remained a mystery and not given us a sense of danger. Against the howl of the windmill in the background bathing in the moonlight we see her unleash the Kandarian dagger upon the already impaled deadite with a smirk on her face. This shot unravels her mystery bit by bit hauntingly as the first person besides Ash to stare down a Deadite with no fear.

S1E4: “Brujo”
Directed By David Frazee
The Brujo’s entire set up is pretty creepy with all sorts of totems that he utilizes for good but look haunting. When Kelly steps into the barn possessed by Eligos the totems come to life and react to the evil stepping before them. The best one though is the face that quickly begins to disappear bit by bit as Kelly approaches. It utters the word Mentirosa, Spanish for a liar, as she steps forth, giving way to a visually striking and terrifying warning.

S1E5: “The Host”
Directed By: David Frazee
Pablo bids farewell to his youth and tutelage under the Brujo while stepping into a new life with Ash that is more in tune with his family’s spiritual upbringing. With each totem lighting up as Pablo walks by the shots build Pablo’s feelings of loss toward a teacher as Pablo emerges a warrior that foreshadows his importance later to come as the first magical force of good in a fight that’s only ever cast spells of evil.

S1E6: “The Killer of Killers”
Directed By Michael Hurst
This is one of the most hilarious yet meaningful shots of the episode. Amanda’s boss has become a deadite ready to kill her. Ash shoots Amanda’s boss in the head, making her question the authority she had adhered to so much. Her idea of Ash as a villain changed with that charming Smile and look to Amanda in a gory pose over the lower jaw of her former boss. Ash looks to her like Uncle Sam simply saying join us! Blood and viscera flowing around him like a fountain. Dangling legs in the background as an added bonus!

S1E7: “Fire In The Hole”
Directed By Michael Hurst
Actions in combat can tell a story just like any dance. The compatibility between our heroes is evocative of Ash and Amanda’s budding romance during the entire sequence. However, it is this one masterful shot of the two working in unison dodging hellfire that tells the story of warrior’s love lit by demon fire!

S1E8: “Ashes to Ashes”
Directed By Tony Tilse
Ash can never escape the past it seems as the series goes on. He is hesitant to trust Pablo and Kelly as friends in his adventure for fear of losing them like he has lost so many others. This infamous shot from Evil Dead 2 is one of the few things that could make him question his machismo. This time he doesn’t even bring the chainsaw down on his beloved Linda but is forced to watch as an invisible chainsaw comes down upon her head forcing him to be reminded of what he did. This plays heavily into his decision making near the end of the season.

S1E9: “Bound In Flesh”
Directed By Tony Tilse
We finally get to see the book speak and beg Ash to not destroy it. This is something we’ve become accustomed to in the comic series, but have never been treated to the book itself speaking to Ash otherwise. We as the audience become the eye of the book and in true Evil Dead fashion watch, Pablo scream as the camera rushes toward him and he fuses with the book. This moment is the change in Pablo that clashes with his new direction discovered in the shot in Episode 5, which then tortures him internally until the end of season 2 where he is constantly being pulled by the necklace of the Brujo and the evil of the books spells.

S1E10: “The Dark One”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
A dreary moonlight shot of blues against the cabin looking ominous as Kelly stares on drenched in blood and anger. It’s a hauntingly beautiful shot. Kelly has fully embraced herself as a ghost beater and is done being tormented ready to start saving her boys. For a lot of characters, this could easily be a breaking point, but this shot affirms Dana Delorenzo as Kelly among some of the most powerful and able Final Girls on the rise.

S2E1: “Home”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
This shot is very telling of Ruby’s betrayal to evil. As her children surround and attack her, she is obscured by darkness and where she lies in terror a bright light emanates from behind her illuminating the scene as if to show her becoming a hero against evil.

S2E2: “The Morgue”
Directed By Tony Tilse
When this episode aired it was one of the most talked about and disgustingly depraved things to see. A simple Camera rig in front of Ash as he struggles to get out of a corpse, pubic hairs and dick swinging in his face. If Dead Alive wanted to take Evil Dead’s title of biggest gross-out scenes, then “Ash Vs Evil Dead” took the title back with excrement and body fluids all over our hero.

S2E3: “Last Call”
Directed By Tony Tilse
There are a ton of great shots of the evil Delta but perhaps the best one is this single frame of Lacey telling her boyfriend she loves him as he is splattered across the windshield. Blood and glass between them as they try for one last kiss against the fire and demonic lighting coming from the Delta and then splat! It’s a small touching moment that makes Lacey’s character a bit more sympathetic as the show goes on. As for her boyfriend? Well, I told you there would be plenty of Shemps to kill off.

S2E4: “DUI”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
After splattering Ash’s dad across the street, The Delta pulls up with a camera spin into the grill revealing an eye stuck in it. Ash’s one true love, his car, that’s survived everything has turned against him and killed his father just as they had reconnected. A perfect role reversal as Brock William’s severed eye is now staring down Ash through the grill of the car. No longer a window into Brock’s soul, but a sick vision of Ash’s love turned enemy.

S2E5: “Confinement”
Directed By Michael J. Bassett
Flashing between light and darkness as the skin is ripped and blood is splattered gives us a horrifying look for the first time at the main antagonist of the season. Baal emerges from the flesh of humanity showing how we are all merely tools for his psychological deceptions.

S2E6: “Trapped Inside”
Directed By Mark Beesley
The moon reflects an eerie light upon Cheryl’s picture as it begins to bleed like the statue of Mary. The innocence of Ash’s sister was never saved and her soul weeps as the flesh is resurrected for evil’s bidding.

S2E7: “Delusion”
Directed By Mark Beesley
This entire episode is about breaking down Ash’s spirit and character, making him think he’s truly insane. As he’s at the breaking point he sees his friends and his love for them saves him. It’s a really simple shot that’s amplified by Bruce’s performance, but that disturbed look against the shadowy bars across his face in the dreary room give him his eureka moment where he comes down from his insanity and understands what he has to do to win.

S2E8: “Ashy Slashy”
Directed By Tony Tilse
Throughout the season the town builds up a boogeyman mythos in Ashy Slashy that we know as an audience member isn’t true but this shot brings Ashy Slashy to life. That boogeyman becomes real as the straight jacket becomes Ashy Slashy’s costume and the fire created by the chainsaw shows a side of Ash we’ve never seen. In this shot, we are convinced he had become a mindless killer.

S2E9: “Home Again”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
We’ve only ever heard his voice and seen his ghost save for a few shots of him discovering the Necronomicon in Evil Dead 2. Professor Knowby watches his student, Tanya, bleed out on the floor. She looks up at her mentor with horror as light swings back and forth casting shadows on his face. He is almost serial killer in nature and the shot reflects how his quest for knowledge outweighs his humanity. We see Professor Knowby and his daughter Ruby are not too dissimilar.

S2E10: “Second Coming”
Directed By Rick Jacobson
The finale brings Ash back to the cabin having to completely confront his past to change the future. With Pablo dead, because of Ash’s own follies, it is in the ashes of Ash’s dark past that Pablo is reborn, no longer tormented by the Necronomicon he takes his first breath as a new human. The evil within him gone and his life ready to begin anew.


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McKenna Grace Snags Lead in Rob Lowe’s Remake of The Bad Seed



Okay so, evidently Rob Lowe is remaking The Bad Seed. Meh, I’m interested. But wait, evidently it will be a Lifetime original film. Urgh, interest is waning.

All jokes aside, I’m intrigued by this remake. Not only is it set to star Rob Lowe, but the man will be directing and executive producing as well.

Another interesting variation is that this film will follow Lowe’s father figure dealing with the evil child, instead of the original film’s mother character played by Nancy Kelly.

And on top of that, today we have news via Deadline that McKenna Grace (Amityville: The Awakening) has been cast as the titular bad seed, Emma, and Patty McCormack – who played the evil little girl in the original, and received an Oscar nomination for performance – will co-star as the psychiatrist who treats Emma.

Grace will next be seen in the Netflix series The Haunting of Hill House from director Mike Flanagan (Hush, Gerald’s Game).

The Lifetime remake is directed and executive produced by Rob Lowe from a script by Barbara Marshall. Lowe as executive produces with Mark Wolper and Elizabeth Stephen and stars alongside Patty McCormack and McKenna Grace.


Lowe plays a single father who seems to have everything under control. But when there is a terrible tragedy takes place at his daughter Emma’s (Grace) school, he is forced to question everything he thought he knew about his beloved daughter. He slowly begins to question if Emma’s exemplary behavior is just a façade and she played a role in the horrific incident. When more strange things begin to happen, he’s faced with keeping a terrible secret to protect Emma, but ultimately must stop her from striking again.


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