The future looks dark indeed. This week brought with it news of superhero franchises getting creepier, beloved horror franchises falling on hard times, and one of the greatest horror video games finally revealing its secrets. Let’s not waste any time. Here is your weekly Horror News Rundown!
Jason Goes to Court: The Final Friday?
Jason Voorhees has fought SWAT teams, psychics, cyborgs and even Freddy Krueger himself, but he may have finally met his match: copyright law.
The screenwriter of the original FRIDAY THE 13TH, Victor Miller, has filed a lawsuit that could potentially grant him ownership of the franchise. It’s a complicated issue, but in short, the issue at hand is whether he was working-for-hire when he wrote the 1980 slasher classic. If so, the intellectual property would belong to those who hired him, but if not, he could take advantage of copyright laws that give him the right to recover the rights to FRIDAY THE 13TH. (Source: Hollywood Reporter)
Naturally, Victor Miller’s lawsuit is being met with opposition from the current rights-owners, and it remains to be seen whether this case will have any impact on the upcoming FRIDAY THE 13TH feature, which is set to be directed by Breck Eisner (THE CRAZIES), and which has been repeatedly delayed since the release of the last FRIDAY THE 13TH feature in 2009.
We’ll keep you posted as this story develops.
Doug Liman Takes Over JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK
The biggest superhero movie franchises have yet to truly embrace their dark side, but that’s about to change. The forces of the supernatural are assembling over at Warner Bros., where their DARK UNIVERSE movie – also known as JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK – has been in development for several years under director/producer Guillermo Del Toro (CRIMSON PEAK, PACIFIC RIM). The film is a superhero team-up focusing on the many magical, horror-themed characters in the DC Universe, including John Constantine, Swamp Thing, Zatanna, Deadman and Etrigan the Demon.
JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK has been stuck in development hell for a while, but it crawled out of the abyss this week when Doug Liman attached himself to direct the progress. It will be the first supernatural-themed film for Doug Liman, who previously directed action-oriented sci-fi films like EDGE OF TOMORROW and JUMPER, and who also revitalized the who action genre in 2002 with THE BOURNE IDENTITY. The screenplay for JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK will be written by Michael Gilio. (Source)
Doug Liman had already been attached to direct the GAMBIT movie for 20th Century Fox, as part of their lucrative X-MEN franchise, but after repeated delays Liman has left that project.
Bella Thorne Invites You to DRINK, SLAY, LOVE
18-year-old ingenue Bella Thorne seems committed to becoming an old school Scream Queen. In addition to her roles in SCREAM: THE SERIES, AMITYVILLE: THE AWAKENING and BOO! A MADEA HALLOWEEN, the actress has signed up to executive produce an adaptation of Sarah Beth Durst’s 2011 vampire novel DRINK, SLAY, LOVE. (Source: Deadline)
DRINK, SLAY, LOVE is the story of a sixteen-year-old vampire who, after a strange supernatural incident, is able to live safely in the daylight. Her family sends her on a hunting expedition to a local high school, in order to bring fresh blood back for a feast, but wouldn’t you know it? She starts growing a conscience.
DRINK, SLAY, LOVE is being developed as a TV movie for Lifetime, and will star Cierra Ramirez as the vampire protagonist. Vanessa Parise is slated to direct the film, which should debut on the Lifetime network in early 2017.
HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER Returns to Theaters!
One of the scariest movies ever produced, HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER, is finally getting the attention it deserves. The 1986 horror drama, starring a then-unknown Michael Rooker (THE WALKING DEAD), was so violent that it had trouble finding distribution until 1990, but Dark Sky Films are celebrating the film’s proper, 30th anniversary by releasing a 4K restoration in October.
HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER stars Rooker as the title maniac, who walks soullessly through life until he moves in with a pair of siblings, Becky (Tracy Arnold) and Otis (Tom Towles), and takes Otis under his wing for a gruesome killing spree. It’s a shockingly frank depiction of sociopathic behavior, directed brilliantly by John McNaughton (WILD THINGS).
The film will be re-released in 20 cities across America on October 21, 2016 after a red carpet event at the Chicago International Film Festival on October 14. If HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER is playing at a theater near you – and you can handle one of the most disturbing movies in movie history – don’t miss it!
Capcom Reveals RESIDENT EVIL 7 Trailer, Accidentally Reveals Gameplay Details
Capcom has been unusually coy about the upcoming video game sequel RESIDENT EVIL 7, the latest in one of the most popular horror game series in history. The plot has been largely under wraps, and even the game’s playable demo played more like an enigmatic teaser than anything else. But this week, they officially released a trailer for RESIDENT EVIL 7… and they accidentally released some gameplay details.
When Capcom submitted RESIDENT EVIL 7 to the Entertainment Association Rating Board, the organization felt it necessary to describe the game in some detail. The protagonist’s name is “Ethan,” and he is “searching for his missing wife in a derelict mansion.” The first-person game will incorporate “pistols, shotguns, flamethrowers, explosives and chainsaws to kill mutant creatures.”
The ESRB has removed the details about RESIDENT EVIL 7 from their website, and we have refrained from spoiling the specifics about the game here. However, the original and more detailed description of the game can be viewed over at Gematsu.
Something Can Prepare You For RINGS
Paramount has finally released a trailer for RINGS, the latest film in the iconic J-Horror franchise about a videotape that kills you seven days after you watch it. The original supernatural thriller, RINGU (1998), spawned the hit American remake THE RING in 2002, and the follow-up THE RING TWO in 2005. But everything old is new again, and RINGS is a new attempt to revitalize the series under the direction of F. Javier Gutierrez (BEFORE THE FALL).
RINGS has been described as follows: “A new chapter in the beloved RING horror franchise. A young woman becomes worried about her boyfriend when he explores a dark subculture surrounding a mysterious videotape said to kill the watcher seven days after he has viewed it. She sacrifices herself to save her boyfriend and in doing so makes a horrifying discovery: there is a “movie within the movie” that no one has ever seen before…”
Of course, nowadays, it’ll probably be pretty hard to find a VCR on which to play the fateful videotape, but maybe that will be addressed in the finished product. We’ll find out when RINGS arrives in theaters on October 28, 2016.