Exclusive Interview: Yam Laranas Talks The Road, Where He's Heading for His Next Project and More - Dread Central
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Exclusive Interview: Yam Laranas Talks The Road, Where He’s Heading for His Next Project and More

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In Filipino filmmaker Yam Laranas’ latest thriller The Road (review here), we see what happens when a twelve-year-old cold case is reopened after three teens go missing on an abandoned road.

During the course of the investigation, more gruesome stories of abduction and murders are discovered, allowing after more than two decades the secrets of the haunted road to be finally revealed.

Today, May 11th, The Road hits limited theaters here in the United States, making Laranas’ spookfest the first Filipino project to ever get a Stateside theatrical release, which is quite an accomplishment. Recently Dread Central had the opportunity to chat with Laranas about his film as well as why horror is where he belongs and where he’ll be heading for his next genre endeavor.

Dread also had the chance to catch up briefly with the director at the red carpet premiere of The Road earlier this week at the Arclight Cinemas in Hollywood, California; after the reading the below interview, make sure to check out the video to hear more from this impressive up-and-coming filmmaker.

Dread Central: I’d like to start off by hearing more on where the story for The Road came from.

Yam Laranas: Well, The Road started with an idea I had around 2005 where I was thinking about places that would be claustrophobic; we’d seen things like an apartment, a room, a haunted house done with claustrophobic elements before so what about something unexpected, like a road? With exploring claustrophobia in an open space, I thought I would be doing something different.

I then had an idea about three teens- you know, the usual thing where they steal a car to go on a road trip and they get lost. As I was developing it, I was really excited, but as I kept going, I hit a blank wall so I left it alone for a while.

Then I chanced upon a tragic story in the Philippines about two sisters being abducted and killed which was a complete random act of violence; I thought it was just terrible, especially the thought of just how randomly violence can happen in this world. So I started working on a story about two sisters traveling alone and I just got stuck again; I decided then to talk to my writing partner because I knew I had a couple of stories here so I thought we could just throw them all on the table and see what happened.

Dread Central: Well, it seems like you took some elements from all of those stories for this then…

Yam Laranas: Oh absolutely! We just ended up combining elements from all those stories to make up The Road, and something still just wasn’t right so I thought about mixing up the story a bit and decided we should tell it in reverse; I knew that would keep audiences guessing because they think what they’re seeing is a predictable story, but in reality it’s anything but predictable.

Everything in The Road is circular, and so it becomes this really fun movie with a lot of creepy moments and good scares in it, too; I’ve really loved the reactions we’ve been getting during all the screenings too because it seems like everyone responds to all the little horror moments in the film so it’s great to see that the movie seems to work universally.

Dread Central: Is the horror genre well received in the Philippines?

Yam Laranas: Definitely; horror movies always do really well there. We especially love our creature features- the sillier, the better. See, horror is universal; people love to be scared. It’s human nature to want to have that kind of control over your emotions like you do when you watch a horror movie and I think that’s what fans like. You can’t control it if someone is really chasing you, but if you’re watching someone getting chased in a tense situation, you can control what you see and experience while that’s happening.

Dread Central: With The Road heading to theaters this weekend, what’s coming up next for you? Are you planning on returning to the Philippines for your next project or are you staying in the US?

Yam Laranas: I’m trying to finish up one story right now, and I’ve got another project with GMA that we’re going to be making in Manila- we’re hoping to start production on that one later this year. It will definitely be a horror film; I really love the genre and I definitely think that’s where I’m going to stay for a while. It’s just too much fun.

Exclusive Interview: Yam Laranas Talks The Road, Where He's Heading for His Next Project and More

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Blumhouse’s Happy Death Day Has Now Made $100 Million Worldwide

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Well, it looks like it will only be a matter of days at this point until we hear that Blumhouse will be producing a sequel to their recent hit Happy Death Day.

Deadline is reporting that the PG-13 slasher has just snatched up $100 million dollars worldwide. It breaks down to a total of $55.5M domestic and $44.6M international.

These are surprising numbers considering the film is a (fairly) bloodless slasher. But it does sport the twist/gimmick of being placed within a time-loop so it has my interest.

I haven’t seen the film yet myself, but I do plan on checking it out once it hits Blu-ray on January 16th, 2018. How about you? Let us know below!

Happy Death Day is directed by Christopher Landon from a screenplay he wrote with Scott Lobdell. The film stars Jessica Rothe, Israel Broussard, Ruby Modine, Charles Aitken, and Rachel Matthews.

The film hits Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand January 16, 2018.

Blu-ray Bonus features:

Alternate Ending

Deleted Scenes

Cupcakes & Killers

You’ve Killed Me!

Tree’s Final Walk of Shame

Worst Birthday Ever – Filmmakers and cast discuss the challenges of executing the time-loop concept at the center of the film, including how to make each day feel different despite the fact it’s being repeated.

Behind the Mask: The Suspects – At the heart of any great murder mystery is a list of possible suspects. In this featurette, we explore all the possible identities of Tree’s killer.

The Many Deaths of Tree – Director Christopher Landon, star Lena Rothe, and producer Jason Blum recap the various ways in which Tree is killed, but also explain why we never actually see her die.

Synopsis:

A college student who relives the day of her murder with both its unexceptional details and terrifying end until she discovers her killer’s identity.

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Whatever Happened to John Gulager’s Children of the Corn: Runaway?

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Sometimes a movie goes into production and then seemingly disappears from the world altogether. It doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. Usually, Dimension is involved.

Ouch. But true.

Such as Amityville: The Awakening which was filmed in 2014 but didn’t get released until recently this year (3 years). And All the Boys Love Mandy Lane which was completed in 2006 but didn’t see release until September of 2013 – a whopping 7 years!

Another such movie you may not have even heard about – or more specifically – may not remember hearing about is the lost Children of the Corn sequel from Feast-director John Gulager called Children of the Corn: Runaway.

What follows is the history of the film as best as we could piece together, along with a possible update on just when we might expect to see this missing sequel.

It’s worth noting right off the top that this film is closely linked to yet another Dimension film which still has yet to see the light of day, Hellraiser: Judgment. Both films were produced around the same time, in the same area, under producer Michael Leahy.

Anyhow, the first word we heard on the production of Children of the Corn: Runaway came on March 21, 2016, when it was merely rumored that there was a new Children of the Corn movie secretly being filmed in Oklahoma City, OK.

It was thought at the time (and most likely true) that Dimension was rushing out a sequel so they could keep the rights to the franchise, regardless if they had a release plan or not.

That same day we learned that the new film was directed by John Gulager and was going by the title Children of the Corn: Runaway. We also learned the film was currently shooting in Oklahoma City, OK and the surrounding area including Luther and Coyle and that filming would wrap on April 2nd of that year.

Joel Soisson was rumored as the screenwriter for the new film, and Gatlin Returns, Inc. (natch) was producing with Mike Leahy, Joel Soisson, and Sean Patrick Eaton.

At the time, the plot of the movie was rumored to be:
A young pregnant Ruth who escapes a murderous child cult in a small Midwestern town. She spends the next decade living anonymously in an attempt to spare her son the horrors that she experienced as a child. She lands in the small Oklahoma town, but something is following her. Now, she must confront this evil or lose her child.

Then all of this info was confirmed the very next day by press release.

A month later on April 13, 2016, we got a bevy of behind the scenes pics via News OK – all courtesy of Nathan Poppe – and you can check all of those out below.

After that? Nada. Total silence for 19 months. Children of the Corn: Runaway seemed to fall off the edge of the world. Just like Hellraiser: Judgment.

But unlike Judgment, which gets fairly regular updates via new Pinhead Paul T. Taylor and director Gary J. Tunnicliffe, no one seems to be talking about Runaway. At all.

What’s the deal?

Truthfully, we’re still not sure. In the researching of this article, we reached out to director John Gulager, writer Joel Soisson, producer Michael Leahy, and new Malachi actor Blaine Maye. But all of these leads came up fruitless.

That is until I attempted to contact lead actress Marci Miller.

While I was unable to contact her directly, I did take a look at her Instagram, where I was able to confirm that the film is currently doing some ADR and will be shooting for a February/March release date.

Here is her post:

Children of the Corn #ComingSoon

A post shared by Marci Miller (@_marcimiller_) on

And if you look closely, you can see that a fan asked (and I’m paraphrasing):

“When will the movie be released?”

And below you will see Miller’s reply:

“February/March.”

For now, that is all the new info we can find on Children of the Corn: Runaway.

That said, with Dimension and the Weinstein Company going under recently, maybe another top horror producer (You listening, Jason Blum?) will snatch up the rights to this and Hellraiser: Judgement and we will finally see the films released.

After all, in the above-mentioned set-visit from NEW OK, producer Michael Leahy said this about Children of the Corn: Runaway and Hellraiser: Judgment:

“We’ve had a lot of fun,” Leahy told the site back in 2016. “Blood has been flowing here in Oklahoma City. These are two horror films that are going to be seen by a core audience.”

Yeah, we’ll see about that…

We’re not trying to be pessimistic here, but really this is getting ridiculous at this point. Will we ever see Children of the Corn: Runaway and/or Hellraiser: Judgment? Your guess is, unfortunately, as good as mine.

Fingers crossed. We’ll let you know when we hear more.

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Synapse’s Suspiria 4K Restoration Gets a Release Date

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Earlier this year, we wrote about Synapse Films’ Suspiria 4K restoration and how it was available for pre-order. The weird catch was that there was no release date confirmed and that pre-orders would go out sometime in December 2017. Today that changes as we can confirm that the 3-disc special edition Blu-ray collection will come out December 19th, just in time for Christmas but a little late for Hanukkah. Any chance we can have one extra night this year?

Restored over three years, Synapse has been working tirelessly to create the ultimate version of Dario Argento’s 1977 classic supernatural horror film, which has since gone on to become one of the most recognized and lauded titles in the genre. This cut has been overseen and approved by Luciano Tovoli, the Director of Photography on the film.

Pre-orders are still available via Synapse Films’ website.

Special features:
*Limited edition of only 6000 units produced
*Exclusive Steelbook packaging and collector’s o-card sleeve, featuring artwork from Malleus, Van Orton Design, Juan José Saldarriaga & Chris MacGibbon
*Three disc [Two Blu-rays + One CD] limited collector’s edition (only 6000 units) containing a new 4K restoration of the original uncut, uncensored Italian 35mm camera negative exclusively done by Synapse Films, with color correction supervised and approved by SUSPIRIA Director of Photography, Luciano Tovoli
*Original 4.0 1977 English language LCRS sound mix not heard since the theatrical release in 1977, presented in high-resolution DTS-HD MA 96 Khz/24-bit audio
*Italian 5.1 surround sound mix
*Two audio commentaries by authors and Argento scholars, Derek Botelho, David Del Valle & Troy Howarth
*Do You Know Anything About Witches? – 30 minute SUSPIRIA visual essay written, edited and narrated by Michael Mackenzie
*Suzy in Nazi Germany – Featurette on the German locations from SUSPIRIA
*A Sigh from the Depths: 40 Years of SUSPIRIA – All-new anniversary retrospective on the making of the film and its influence on cinema
*Olga’s Story – Interview with star Barbara Magnolfi
*Original theatrical trailers, TV spots and radio spots
*Special Collector Edition Booklet containing an American Cinematographer interview with Luciano Tovoli, liner notes by Derek Botelho and restoration notes by Vincent Pereira & Don May, Jr. Cover artwork by Matthew Therrien Illustration
*“International Classics” English “Breathing Letters” opening credit sequence from U.S. release version
*Alternate All-English opening and closing credits sequences, playable via seamless branching
*Newly translated, removable English SDH subtitles for the English language version
*Newly translated, removable English subtitles for the Italian language version
*Exclusive CD remaster of Goblin’s SUSPIRIA motion picture soundtrack, containing additional tracks not included on the original 1977 soundtrack release

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