Back in October we brought you a pretty awesome Halloween treat: a mock trailer for Clown, which was assembled using Eli Roth’s name as the crux for the joke. While it was funny, it was actually a pretty sweet idea for a feature as it followed a dad who puts on a clown costume for his kid’s birthday, only to have it transform into an evil clown creature. The treat is now a full blown bag of candy as a feature film version was financed, with Roth coming aboard to produce. You’ll find the full details inside, along with info a second project, Aftershock, which takes place following the Chilean earthquake.
Eli Roth (Cabin Fever, Hostel) is at the center of Clown and Aftershock, two horror projects that have just been set up to be fully financed by Cross Creek Pictures and Vertebra Films. Roth will produce and be the creative godfather of both.
Jon Watts will direct Clown from a script he’s writing with Christopher D. Ford that spawned from a mock trailer they made (watch it below), which appropriated Roth’s name at a time when he’d never heard of the team or the movie concept. In the spoof trailer and the upcoming feature, a loving father dons a clown outfit, wig, bulbous nose and pancake makeup to entertain at his son’s sixth birthday after the clown-for-hire is a no-show. Unable to take off the clown garb, dad’s personality changes in horrific fashion. He and his family race to break the curse of the evil outfit before he undergoes a complete transformation into a homicidal killer with over-sized shoes.
Ford and Watts do commercials and music videos, and they generated the spoof trailer to get attention. It worked when Roth liked what he saw. CAA set Roth up with Cross Creek president Brian Oliver and Vertebra’s Steven Chester Prince to generate films, he showed them the mock trailer and they agreed to fund a feature transfer.
They also agreed to finance Aftershock, a thriller which Nicolas Lopez will direct from a script he has written with Guillermo Amoedo. Lopez hails from Chile, and the film is set during the aftermath of the February 27, 2010 Chilean earthquake that hit 8.8 on the Richter scale, created a tsunami and claimed the lives of more than 480 in one terrifying event.
Speaking of Clown, Roth hopes it’ll be a modern Fly: “I loved how ballsy they were, issuing a trailer that said, ‘From the Master of Horror, Eli Roth.’ Some people thought I’d made the movie, or that it was another fake Grindhouse trailer. The first thing they said was, ‘Thank you for not suing us, but I told them, ‘This is Hollywood, and while it’s tradition that every movie eventually ends up in a lawsuit, you only sue when you are fighting over profits. It’s no fun to sue before there’s any money.’ But I really felt these guys deserved a shot, and that people are truly freaked out by evil clowns. It’s new territory to make this a version of The Fly, where this guy can feel himself changing, blacking out only to find blood all over his clown suit. You’re sympathetic toward a monster until the monster actually takes over.”