Be nice… or he’ll be naughty.
Legendary Pictures’ Krampus, in theaters December 4th, a darkly festive tale of a yuletide ghoul, reveals an irreverently twisted side to the holiday.
USA Today has premiered the first images from Trick ‘r Treat director Michael Dougherty’s latest holiday offering that suggest you don’t end up on “his” list. And a quick search online found us the international trailer for the holiday horror film that looks absolutely bonkers!
“It’s one thing to be terrified or enthralled when you’re watching a film,” the filmmaker told the site. “To then leave the theater and realize it’s based on real myths and legends only makes it sink in even deeper.”
In Krampus, “When his dysfunctional family clashes over the holidays, young Max (Emjay Anthony) is disillusioned and turns his back on Christmas. Little does he know, this lack of festive spirit has unleashed the wrath of Krampus: a demonic force of ancient evil intent on punishing non-believers.
All hell breaks loose as beloved holiday icons take on a monstrous life of their own, laying siege to the fractured family’s home and forcing them to fight for each other if they hope to survive.“
Just the thought of Santa is creepy, Dougherty says: “That there is some sort of supernatural entity that keeps an eye on you all year long and determines if you’re naughty or nice.”
The look and character of the film’s Krampus was distilled from various postcards and illustrations of the creature over the years, adds the site. He was historically tied to St. Nicholas beginning in the 17th century, and that’s the interpretation Dougherty is going with, that Krampus is “judge, jury and executioner” but also the “shadow” of Santa.
Just don’t call him evil, the director says. “He’s more complex and nuanced than that.
“He’s not Freddy (A Nightmare on Elm Street) or Jason (Friday the 13th) or Leatherface (The Texas Chainsaw Massacre), this [isn’t an] unstoppable monster that kicks down your door and rampages and grabs you,” he added. “If you study the myth, there’s something darkly playful about him. He’s having a good time doing what he does and he enjoys the cat-and-mouse aspect of it.”
Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner, Allison Tolman, Conchata Ferrell, Emjay Anthony, Stefania Lavie Owen with Krista Stadler star in Krampus.