Even before Sam Raimi and company fully defined the character in Evil Dead II, Ash was always a strange hero. For much of the more seriously minded The Evil Dead, we see Ash cowering in the background while the more manly Scotty takes care of business. It’s only when Scotty finds defeat (and rape?) at the hands of some Evil Dead trees that Ash finally steps up to the plate.
That’s pretty much how he’s been ever since. We know Ash as a mouthy idiot who can dish out violence but is just as likely to talk tough and run away from it (when he’s not getting knocked around and abused like a rag doll, that is). We love Ash, but he’s not the only character of this type. There are many other Ash-a-Likes out there, some knowing ripoffs, others mere coincidences.
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Say what you will about Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games, but I thought it was a pretty good movie, with a an even more so competent screenplay.
Vulture is reporting that Universal Pictures has taken the unusual step of hiring two different screenwriters to work on dueling The Mummy scripts. It was already known that Jon Spaihts, who co-wrote Prometheus for director Ridley Scott, is hammering away on an update of The Mummy set in the present day. But what wasn’t known is that The Hunger Games screenwriter Billy Ray has also been hired to craft a competitive draft, also set in contemporary society!
Says the site, by hiring two screenwriters to work on competing Mummy projects at the same time, the studio believes it is effectively doubling its chances that it will at least have one Mummy script that’s camera-ready by the late summer or early fall.
What Universal doesn’t know is that, by hiring Total Recall and Underworld‘s Len Wiseman, they have already accepted mediocrity as a final product.
By now you probably know that Len Wiseman (Underworld, Total Recall (2012)) will be directing The Mummy remake. And you probably know that Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci (co-writers of Transformers, Star Trek, Cowboys And Aliens) are producing it (and a Van Helsing remake), for Universal. The Mummy is one of the all time iconic Universal monsters, so you might have been wondering what direction this thing will take, and now Wiseman is acknowledging his intent.
He told Movieweb “There was skepticism. The difference between the two, if ‘The Mummy’ is to be the next movie for me, is that ‘The Mummy’ is a completely different film. It is a modern day take. It doesn’t have anything to do with the Brendan Fraser films, and it is not a remake of any kind… the pitch was to go with a much different tone. It was a Mummy like I’d never heard of before. Its nothing like what you would expect, at all, oddly. I was picturing Egypt, and the sand swept settings. The mummy wrappings. When I heard what they were wanting to actually do with it, it was shocking.” He added, “It’s horror. Its epic. It’s more of a modern day version of what would happen if we came across a mummy in our world today. It is pretty fascinating.”
Okay. So I like the fact that this will be a modern-day version and will eschew the aesthetics of the last 3 or 4 films in the franchise. I think Wiseman is visually talented, but I’ve never loved one of his movies. Then again the film’s screenwriter Jon Spaihts wrote that draft of Prometheus (aka Alien: Engineers) that was better than the Lindelof version – so who knows at this point?
At least it won’t be in the desert.
From October 19th to November 10th, Mondo will be holding a gallery show featuring numerous posters for the classic Universal Monster movies! A few weeks ago they unveiled their take on Creature From The Black Lagoon by artist Laurent Durieux. Now they’ve unveiled an additional Ken Taylor poster for that film. Also announced are two amazing new posters for The Mummy (again by Laurent Durieux) and The Invisible Man (by Francesco Francavilla).
When the show opens it will feature one-sheets from dozens of world-renowned artists including Martin Ansin, Rick Baker, JC Richard, Kevin Tong, Ken Taylor and many more. The gallery will also include original, never-before-seen works from legendary poster artist Drew Struzan. A full roster of artists can be found in the postcard image below the jump.
Head inside for a look at all of these as well as the older Black Lagoon poster. READ MORE
Bloody-Disgusting is thrilled to bring you an exclusive interview with Kirk Hammett, the legendary lead guitarist of Metallica! We got the opportunity to ask Kirk a few questions about Metallica before we dove into the world of horror and his book Too Much Horror Business (Amazon). We also get to hear stories of Kirk’s childhood as well as a bit about Cliff Burton and his love of horror. You can read this exclusive interview below! READ MORE
After the success of The Hunchback Of Notre Dame in 1923, Universal began its now eighty-plus year horror fixation with The Phantom Of The Opera. Under the watch of Carl Laemlle Jr.’s, Universal produced Tod Browning’s Dracula and James Whale’s Frankenstein, both of which are among the most influential and recognizable horror films ever made – the Spanish version of Dracula, shot at night on the same sets the English-language version used, is considered to be superior and equally important by many. From the 30’s until the late 50’s, Universal produced the bulk of their “classic” monster films, including The Mummy (a property the studio has bastardized far past the point of return), The Invisible Man, The Wolf Man, and – a personal favorite of mine – Creature From The Black Lagoon. With make-up pioneers like Jack Pierce, incredible directors like James Whale, and horror personas like Lon Chaney Jr., Boris Karloff, and Bela Lugosi (and to a lesser extent, the “cross-over” film), Universal forever changed the horror landscape. READ MORE
Back in May we reported that Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci (co-writers of Transformers, Star Trek, Cowboys And Aliens) and their K/O Paper Products banner had kicked off a new producing relationship with Universal by reimagining titles from the studio’s library, one of which is the and The Mummy remake (the other film in the deal is Van Helsing with Tom Cruise. Paper Products was set to develop and produce a modern re-imagining of the project alongside producer Sean Daniel. Jon Spaihts (The Darkest Hour, draft one of Prometheus) will be writing the script.
And now this project has a director… Len Wiseman (Underworld, the Total Recall remake). Per Deadline, “Universal Pictures is setting Len Wiseman to direct The Mummy, the reboot of a franchise whose most recent incarnation grossed $1.25 billion over three films. Jon Spaihts is writing the script and the studio is eyeing a potential summer 2014 release, so things are moving quickly, with Universal eager to ramp back up one of its most venerable franchises.”
Presented without comment is this quote from Kurtzman. “A lot of the work with Len has been about creating mythology, and I remember seeing Underworld and finding it a beautiful advancement of the genre. It was presented in this fresh, incredibly cool concept, but it never gave up its reverence for the mythology and that is what inspired us to meet with Len.”
So. There it is. Not really excited about this, but wasn’t too excited before either.
For the first time ever, eight of the most iconic cinematic masterpieces of the horror genre are available together on Blu-ray as Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection debuts on October 2, 2012 from Universal Studios Home Entertainment. Digitally restored from high resolution film elements in perfect high-definition picture and perfect high-definition sound for the first time ever, Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection brings together the very best of Universal’s legendary monsters—imaginative and technically groundbreaking tales of terror that launched a uniquely American movie genre. This definitive collection features eight films on Blu-ray, a collectible 48-page book featuring behind-the-scenes photographs, original posters, correspondence and much more. Each iconic film is accompanied by an array of bonus features that tell the fascinating story of its creation and history, including behind-the-scenes documentaries, filmmaker commentaries, interviews, storyboards, photo galleries, and trailers. Especially appealing for fans are a never-before-seen featurette about the restoration of Dracula and the first ever offering of Creature from the Black Lagoon in its restored Blu-ray 3D version!
From the era of silent movies through the present day, Universal Pictures has been regarded as the home of the monsters. Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection honors the studio’s accomplishments with the most iconic monsters in motion-picture history including Dracula, Frankenstein, The Mummy, The Invisible Man, Bride of Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, Phantom of the Opera and Creature from the Black Lagoon. Featuring performances by legends of the horror genre, including Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, Jr., Claude Rains and Elsa Lanchester, these eight iconic films also feature groundbreaking special effects and innovative makeup that continue to influence filmmakers into the 21st century. Sure to be a Halloween favorite for years to come, Universal Classic Monsters: The Essential Collection is the ideal gift for film buffs and horror aficionados alike!
Inside you can check out the full specs, art and watch a video depicting the Dracula restoration process. AMAZING. READ MORE
Producers Robert Orci and Alex Kurtzman recently spoke to Crave about the forthcoming Van Helsing, which is (no shock) a reboot.
“Well, I don’t want to give away too much, because we are actually at the very beginning of talking about what to do with it. But I do feel like the Van Helsing that Anthony Hopkins plays in [Bram Stoker’s] Dracula is sort of the parody version of it, and the Van Helsing that Hugh Jackman played was obviously in a different place as well,” they explain. “I think that these kinds of movies have evolved a lot since then. You know, The Dark Knight was a major, major corner-turning moment in the way that genre and superhero stories could be told. Really grounded in reality. Really grounded in really cool things. That’s what I’d like to do without sacrificing the fantasy element. We aspired to do that as well on Trek, you know, keep it “real.” That’s such a different franchise than Batman, but that’s really what we wanted to do. And we’d love to do that with Van Helsing.”
The duo aren’t saying that the original was a parody, but they’re correct in stating that it feels like it. The hammy nature of Universal’s 2004 film, directed by Stephen Somers, is as cheeseball filled as they come. Approaching the franchise from a real place begins with the script and ends with the effects work. Hopefully they can work together and deliver a epic creature feature that we deserve?
Universal Pictures today announced the studio has signed a two-year first-look production deal with one of the leading writing/producing teams in the entertainment industry, Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orci, and their K/O Paper Products banner. The duo will kick off their new relationship with Universal by reimagining titles from the studio’s library including Van Helsing and The Mummy.
Kurtzman and Orci’s K/O Paper Products will develop and produce a modern reimagining of Universal library titles including The Mummy, alongside producer Sean Daniel and writer Jon Spaihts. The pair will also develop and produce Universal’s reimagined Van Helsing, with Tom Cruise attached to star in and produce the film.
Kurtzman and Orci have collaborated with some of the industry’s top creative minds including J.J. Abrams, with whom they wrote the third installment of Mission: Impossible, which grossed nearly $400 million at the worldwide box office. In 2007, they wrote Transformers and went on to write Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen in 2009. Together, those films grossed more than $1.5 billion worldwide. More recently, the pair wrote and executive produced 2009′s Star Trek, which grossed more than $385 million worldwide.
Kurtzman and Orci’s upcoming projects include writing Sony’s next installment of The Amazing Spider-Man. The pair most recently rewrote All You Need Is Kill for Warner Bros., with Tom Cruise attached to star, Doug Liman to direct and Erwin Stoff to produce. READ MORE
Universal Pictures is officially rebooting one of their most treasured franchises, The Mummy. Of course, the lineage of pics that Stephen Sommers kicked off in 1999 was itself just the latest reboot of the material (even though that was long before the term “reboot” was coined). This latest version will still be produced by Sean Daniel and (at least this initial draft) will be written by Jon Spaihts (Prometheus, The Darkest Hour).
Per Variety, “Universal Pictures has tapped “Prometheus” scribe Jon Spaihts to pen a reboot of “The Mummy” franchise, which Sean Daniel will return to produce. Stephen Sommers’ 1999 take on “The Mummy,” which starred Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz, grossed $415 million worldwide. A 2004 sequel grossed $433 worldwide and Rob Cohen’s “The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor” took in $401 million worldwide, indicating there’s still plenty of interest in the franchise.”
For what it’s worth, Spaihts seems to have the right intentions, “I see it as the sort of opportunity I had with Prometheus: to go back to a franchise’s roots in dark, scary source material, and simultaneously open it up to an epic scale we haven’t seen before.”
What direction would you guys like to see the material go in? READ MORE
Fright-Rags continues to lead the pack with their ever expanding resume of horror inspired t-shirts, and as of today you can pick up their newest creation – “MONSTER MASH”. The tee (pictured below) is the product of artist Jason Edmiston (“Wacky Packages”, “Rue-Morgue”, “Mondo”)and Famous Monsters of Filmland, and limited to just 300 prints. The shirt went on sale today, so be sure to snatch one of them up before they are all gone.
“MONSTER MASH” Is Available NOW On Fright-Rags’ Official Website! (MSRP-$19.95) READ MORE
In 1921 a field expedition in Egypt discovers the mummy of ancient Egyptian prince Im-Ho-Tep, who was condemned and buried alive for sacrilege. Also found in the tomb is the Scroll of Thoth, which can bring the dead back to life. One night a young member of the expedition reads the Scroll out loud, and then goes insane, realizing that he has brought Im-Ho-Tep back to life. Ten years later, disguised as a modern Egyptian, the mummy attempts to reunite with his lost love, an ancient princess who has been reincarnated into a beautiful young woman.