Director Patrick Lussier and the Weinstein Company have just recently released Drive Angry and after a disappointing stint in the box office, they are now moving forward with plans at two big horror franchise reboots: Hellraiser and of course, Halloween 3D.
While I’m sure both films are going to generate a lot of buzz, I think the biggest news is (and has been) on the latter of the two.
The news about the three-dimensional trip to the sleepy town of Haddonfield originally broke during the opening weekend of Rob Zombie’s sequel to the remake, Halloween II.
Mr. Zombie’s sequel earned close to a pitiful $7 million in its opening weekend and that prompted the studio to examine quick options for a rebound. Originally planned for a Summer 2010 release, Halloween 3D was set to be directed by Lussier and scripted by him and his fellow Bloody Valentine 3D partner Todd Farmer.
According to the two filmmakers, they presented a script to the company and were then told that there were no plans to make the film anytime soon because they didn’t want to rush it.
And I agree.
For once, I agree with the Weinstein brothers. Now is not the time to rush a film like Halloween 3D into production. The film series has too much prestige behind it to put one out just to make a quick buck so people forget about H2.
But just because the project shouldn’t be rushed, doesn’t mean we all can’t start thinking about the film now. As a matter of fact, I think it is 100% necessary that we talk about the future of the Halloween franchise now. It is crucial to plan ahead that way we can ensure we as viewers are never again tortured with anything like Zombie’s sequel.
If there DOES have to be another Halloween made and if it DOES have to be in 3D, there are some concerns I have and rules that should be followed in order to ensure that nobody’s expectations are hurt and that nobody’s money is wasted at the theater.
Keep ’em low
The first, and perhaps the biggest, responsibility lies with fans of the Halloween films. While it is not clear what plot the film will take, the only thing for sure is that it will be 3D. So, what does that mean to all of you Michael Myers fans?
It means that you need to keep your minds open but your expectations very, VERY low. Do not expect greatness from this movie. Do not expect cinematography and style similar to John Carpenter’s original. Movies made in 3D are made for just that reason: to show off the technology. 3D is a novelty and as long as that is accepted, there should be no misunderstandings and everyone can just have fun watching Michael Myers slice and dice right in front of us.
Keep it simple!
This one goes out to the studio. It is important to realize that in order to never repeat history, we must learn from it. So, in order for Dimension films to learn from the past, the company must NEVER make another film like Halloween II again.
How can they do that?
Easy. Keep it simple!
The best way for the studios to cash in on the technology while promoting the Halloween franchise is to just stick to basics. Fans of the series (or at least the ones with common sense) already know that the movie is going to be nothing more than a way to show off the 3D technology by exploiting the franchise. Pretending that the film is going to be the best Halloween ever with the best plot is a huge mistake and a blatant lie.
The biggest concern I have is the best advice I can give to good ol’ Harvey and Bob (Weinstein): stick to basics when it comes to the plot. Strip the film down to its frame and go back to the idea that made the first one so good.
What made the first film so good was the simplicity of it. It was about an escaped mental patient that stalked and murdered babysitters on Halloween…nothing more. He was a psycho in a white William Shatner mask that grabbed a knife and went trick or treating.
If I were making the film, for example, I would suggest making the plot almost identical to the original film but have no underlying story. There would be no curse, no sister, no motive. I would set the film in modern times to keep the story fresh and updated (no need to reinvent the wheel like Zombie tried to do). The focus would be on the town, the holiday and the history of Michael Myers.
I would have a group of cliche teenagers getting drunk and partying on Halloween. Then, I would have said teenagers get murdered in very gruesome ways by Myers.
Because, like I said, I would know going into production that the film is only being made to capitalize on the 3D craze. So, I’d keep the plot simple and make a good old fashioned horror flick out of it.
Now, I’m not saying I would be skimpy on the suspense and creativity. I am just saying I would not pretend the movie had a deep plot. I would make it a slasher movie that takes place on Halloween. That is all.
So, while I know I am not going to be the one in the director’s chair for the new Halloween, I hope that whoever is takes this advice and makes a film that is fun, exciting and uses the technology well. There is no need to go for the good with this one. Just make it a fun 3D experience that is unique, scary and so bloody that it flies off the screen and hits our glasses.